The Protection And Use of Patient Information
We ask you for information about yourself so that you can receive proper care and treatment. We keep this information, together with details of your care, because it may be needed if we see you again.
We may use some of the information for other reasons, for example, to help us protect the health of the public generally and to see that the NHS runs efficiently, plans for the future, trains its staff, pays its bills and can account for its actions.
Sometimes the law requires us to pass on information, for example, to notify a birth. The NHS Central Register for England and Wales contains basic personal details of all patients registered with a general practitioner. This register does not contain clinical information.
You have the right of access to your health records.
EVERYONE WORKING FOR THE NHS HAS A LEGAL DUTY TO KEEP INFORMATION ABOUT YOU CONFIDENTIAL.
You may be receiving care from other people as well as the NHS. So that we can all work together for your benefit we may need to share some information about you if people have a genuine need for it in your and everyone’s interest.
Whenever we can we shall remove details that identify you. The law strictly controls the sharing of some types of very sensitive personal information.
Anyone who receives information from us is also under a legal duty to keep it confidential.
The Main Reasons For Which Your Information May Be Needed:
• Giving you health care and treatment.
• Looking after the health of the general public.
• Managing and planning the NHS, for example by:
- Making sure that our services can meet patients' needs in the future.
- Paying your doctor, nurse, dentist, or other staff, and the hospital which treats you, for the care they provide.
- Auditing accounts.
- Preparing statistics on NHS performance and activity (where steps will be taken to ensure you cannot be identified).
- Investigating complaints or legal claims
- Helping staff to review the care they provide to make sure it is of the highest standard.
- Training and educating staff (though you can choose whether or not to be involved personally).
- Research approved by the Local Ethics Committee. (If anything to do with the research would involve you personally, you will be contracted to see if you are willing to take part. We may need to release your name and address to medical researchers to enable them to contact you for this purpose. You will not be identified in any published results without your agreement.
Information about You
Information about you and the care you receive is shared, in a secure system, by healthcare staff to support your treatment and care.
Information such as your postcode and NHS number, but not your name, will be used to link your records in a secure system, so you identity is protected. Information which does not reveal your identity can then be used by others, such as researchers and those planning health services, to make sure that the best possible care for everyone is provided.
How your information is used and shared is controlled by law and strict rules are in place to protect your privacy. We need to make sure that you know what is happening and the choices you have.
You have the right to prevent confidential information about you from being shared or used for any purpose other than providing your care, except in special circumstances. If you do not want information that identifies you to be shared outside your GP practice, ask a member of reception to make a note of this in your medical record. This will prevent your confidential information being used other than where necessary by law, (for example, if there is a public health emergency.)
If you are happy for your information to be shared you do not need to do anything.
There is no form to fill in and you can change your mind at any time.
Leaflets regarding information sharing are available from the surgery or www.nhs.uk/caredata