How we use cookies

When you enter our websites, your computer will automatically be issued with a number of small text files known as “cookies”. 

These cookies are used to make our websites run more efficiently, and allow our web server to remember and store your preferences as you travel throughout our sites.

We also use cookies to track visitor interaction with our websites. Analytical information is collected anonymously and is used by Healthcare Improvement Scotland to make improvements to our websites and their usability.

A list of cookies used by our sites and their purpose can be found below

Cookie Name

Expiration Time



2 years

Used to distinguish users.


24 hours

Used to distinguish users.


1 minute

Used to throttle request rate.


30 seconds to 1 year

Contains a token that can be used to retrieve a Client ID from AMP Client ID service. Other possible values indicate opt-out, inflight request or an error retrieving a Client ID from AMP Client ID service.


90 days

Contains campaign related information for the user. If you have linked your Google Analytics and AdWords accounts, AdWords website conversion tags will read this cookie unless you opt-out.

Most modern web browsers allow users to control cookies through the browser settings. To find out more about cookies, including how to see what cookies have been set on your browser and how to manage and delete them, visit or

To opt out of being tracked by Google Analytics across all websites visit


We use Hotjar in order to better understand our users’ needs in order to improve all NHS Healthcare Improvement Scotland websites.

Hotjar is a technology service that helps us better understand our users’ experience such as:

  • how much time they spend on which pages
  •  which links they choose to click
  •  what users do and don’t like

Hotjar uses cookies and other technologies to collect data on our users’ behaviour and their devices.

This includes:

  • a device's IP address (processed during your session and stored in a de-identified form)
  • device screen size
  • device type (unique device identifiers)
  • browser information
  • geographic location (country only)
  • the preferred language used to display our website

Hotjar stores this information on our behalf in a pseudonymized user profile. Hotjar is contractually forbidden to sell any of the data collected on our behalf.

Visit the Hotjar website for more information.