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What is Biolink?

 Biolink is a service of the Centre for Health Record Linkage (CHeReL), offered exclusively to clients of the NSW Health Statewide Biobank (NSWHSB). Using state-of-the-art data linkage methodology and expert advice, Biolink enables the biospecimens stored at NSWHSB to be longitudinally linked with a broad range of routinely collected health data about participants. Linkage to routinely collected data provides an efficient and cost-effective alternative to manual follow up of participants’ health service use and outcomes.  

 For Collection Custodians and researchers using the NSWHSB, the CHeReL provides a comprehensive data linkage service that includes:

 1)      Establishing data linkage arrangements for Collection Custodians who deposit biospecimens with NSWHSB

2)      Enabling access to linked data for researchers who withdraw biospecimens from NSWHSB

3)      Providing expert advice on ethics approval and data custodian approvals

CHeReL has a dedicated Biolink Research Project Manager, who can provide more information on accessing services and access conditions.  The Biolink Research Project Manager can be contacted  at


What type of data can be requested?

 The CHeReL can link consenting participants to a broad range of routinely collected data from NSW Health and other administrative or research data collections.  

 Examples of routinely collected NSW Health data and accompanying data dictionaries can be accessed at /datasets.    

 A Biospecimen Linked Standardised Data Asset (BLSDA) is being developed to simplify access to linked NSW Health data. The BLSDA will be a core minimum health data asset of linked NSW Health data collections for the participants in a number of strategic biospecimen collections held in the NSWHSB.  The NSW Health data asset will be available off the shelf at no cost to eligible researchers.  Approval is required in accordance with the Strategic Collection Access Policy available at


Are you applying for the Biospecimen Collection Grant?

 The Office and Health and Medical Research has announced a second round of the  Biospecimen Collection Grant

 The Grant Guidelines, available at include a data linkage EOI form that must be provided to the CHeReL by July 24 2020.  To discuss the data linkage EOI or grant conditions pertaining to data linkage, please contact us on 9461 7884 or