Practice Privacy Notice
What you need to know
This fair processing notice explains why information is collected about you and the ways in which this information may be used.
Why do we need information about you?
Your doctor and other Health & Social Care Professionals keep records about you, your health/social care and any treatment and/or care you receive from the NHS. These records are known as care records and they help us to ensure that you receive the best possible care from us. The information maybe passed to other areas for monitoring purposes and whenever possible the information is always anonymised.
What information is held?
We hold information in both paper and electronic (computer) formats and we use a combination of working practices and technology to ensure that your information is kept confidential and secure. Records which this GP Practice holds about you may include the following information;
- Details about you, such as your address, legal representative, emergency contact details
- Any contact the surgery has had with you, such as appointments, clinic visits, emergency appointments, etc.
- Notes and reports about your health
- Details about your treatment and care
- Results of investigations such as laboratory tests, x-rays etc
- Relevant information from other health professionals, relatives or those who care for you
How your records are used to help you?
Your records are used to guide professionals in the care you receive to ensure that:
- The best possible care, your records are used to facilitate the care you receive
- Your doctor, nurse or any healthcare professionals involved in your care has accurate and up-todate information to assess your health and decide what care you need
- Full information is available if you see another doctor elsewhere or are referred to a specialist or another part of the NHS
- There is good basis for assessing the type and quality of care you have received.
- Your concerns can be properly investigated if you need to complain.
How your records are used to help the NHS?
Information held about you may be used to help protect the health of the public and to help us manage the NHS. Information may be used within the practice for clinical audit to monitor the quality of the service provided. Some of this information will be held centrally and used for statistical purposes. . Anonymous statistical information may also be passed to organisations with legitimate interest such as health research institutions. Where we do this, we take strict measures to ensure that individual patients cannot be identified.
Where it is not possible to use annonymised information, personally identifiable information may be used for essential NHS purposes. These may include research and auditing services. This will only be done with your consent, unless law requires information to be passes on to Improve public health. You information may also be used to help us:
- Make sure our services can meet patient needs in the future
- Review the care we provide to ensure it is of the high standard
- Conduct health research/audits and development
- Pay your GP for the care they provide
- Investigate complaints
How do we keep your records confidential and secure?
Everyone working for the NHS has a legal and professional duty to ensure that all your information is safely and securely protected. You may be receiving care from other organisation as well as the doctor (like social services). We may need to share some information about you so we can all work together for your benefit.
We will only ever use or pass on information about you if others involved in your care have a genuine need for it. We will not disclose your information to third parties without your permission unless there are exceptional circumstances, such as when the law requires information to be passed on. Anyone who receives information from us is also under a legal duty to keep it confidential and secure.
We are required by law to report certain information to the appropriate authorities. Occasions when we must pass on information include: Where we encounter infectious diseases which may endanger the safety of others such as meningitis or measles.
Risk stratification data tools are increasingly being used in the NHS to help determine a person’s risk of suffering a particular condition, preventing an unplanned or (re)admission and identifying a need for preventive intervention. Information about you is collected from a number of sources including NHS Trusts and from this Practice. A risk score is then arrived at through an analysis of your deidentified information and is only provided back to your GP as data controller in an identifiable form.
Risk stratification enables your GP to focus on preventing ill health and not just the treatment of sickness. If necessary your GP may be able to offer you additional services. Please note that you have the right to opt out.
How the NHS and care services use your information
Mitcham family practice is one of many organisations working in the health and care system to improve care for patients and the public.
The Health and Social Care Act 2012 allows the Health & Social Care Information Centre (HSCIC) to collate personal confidential data from GP practices without seeking your specific consent. Care.data is an example of a service that NHS England (not individual GP practices) has set up to use HSCIC to collect data from GP practices about patients. This is in order to make increased use of information from medical records with the intention of improving healthcare and the quality of care delivered to patients.
Information will be extracted from GP systems and includes personal confidential data such as referrals, NHS prescriptions and other clinical data. It also includes identifiers like your date of birth (DoB), postcode, NHS number and gender. This is so that your information can be linked with data from other healthcare settings for example, the hospital.
Whenever you use a health or care service, such as attending Accident & Emergency or using Community Care services, important information about you is collected in a patient record for that service. Collecting this information helps to ensure you get the best possible care and treatment.
The information collected about you when you use these services can also be used and provided to other organisations for purposes beyond your individual care, for instance to help with:
- Improving the quality and standards of care provided
- Research into the development of new treatments
- Preventing illness and diseases
- Monitoring safety
- Planning services
This may only take place when there is a clear legal basis to use this information. All these uses help to provide better health and care for you, your family and future generations. Confidential patient information about your health and care is only used like this where allowed by law.
Most of the time, anonymised data is used for research and planning so that you cannot be identified in which case your confidential patient information isn’t needed. You have a choice about whether you want your confidential patient information to be used in this way. If you are happy with this use of information you do not need to do anything. If you do choose to opt-out your confidential patient information will still be used to support your individual care.
To find out more or to register your choice to opt out, please visit www.nhs.uk/your-nhs-data-matters. On this web page you will:
- See what is meant by confidential patient information
- Find examples of when confidential patient information is used for individual care and examples of when it is used for purposes beyond individual care
- Find out more about the benefits of sharing data
- Understand more about who uses the data
- Find out how your data is protected
- Be able to access the system to view, set or change your opt-out setting
- Find the contact telephone number if you want to know any more or to set/change your opt-out by phone
- See the situations where the opt-out will not apply
You can also find out more about how patient information is used at:
- www.hra.nhs.uk/information-about-patients/ (which covers health and care research)
- www.understandingpatientdata.org.uk/what-you-need-know (which covers how and why patient information is used, the safeguards and how decisions are made)
You can change your mind about your choice at any time.
Data being used or shared for purposes beyond individual care does not include your data being shared with insurance companies or used for marketing purposes and data would only be used in this way with your specific agreement.
Health and care organisations have until 2020 to put systems and processes in place so they can apply your national data opt-out choice. Our organisation ‘is / is not currently’ able to apply your national data opt-out choice to any confidential patient information we may use or share with other organisations for purposes beyond your individual care.
How do we maintain the confidentiality of your records?
We are committed to protecting your privacy and will only use information collected lawfully in accordance with:
- GDPR 2018
- Human Rights Act 1998
- Common Law Duty of Confidentiality
- Health and Social Care Act 2012
- NHS Codes of Confidentiality and Information Security
Every member of staff who works for an NHS organisation has a legal obligation to keep information about you confidential.
We will only ever use or pass on information about you if others involved in your care have a genuine need for it. We will not disclose your information to any 3rd party without your permission unless there are exceptional circumstances (i.e. life or death situations), where the law requires information to be passed on. Where “The duty to share information can be as important as the duty to protect patient confidentiality.” This means that health and social care professionals should have the confidence to share information in the best interests of their patients within the framework set out by the Caldicott principles. They should be supported by the policies of their employers, regulators and professional bodies.
Who are our partner organisations?
We may also have to share your information, subject to strict agreements on how it will be used, with the following organisations;
- NHS Trusts / Foundation Trusts
- NHS Commissioning Support Units
- Independent Contractors such as dentists, opticians, pharmacies
- Private Sector Providers
- Voluntary Sector Providers
- Ambulance Trusts
- Clinical Commissioning Groups
- Social Care Services
- Health and Social Care Information Centre (HSCIC)
- Local Authorities
- Education Services
- Fire and Rescue Services
- Police & Judicial Services
- Voluntary Sector Providers
- Private Sector Providers
- The National Diabetes Audit
- Other ‘data processors’ which you will be informed of
You will be informed who your data will be shared with and in some cases asked for explicit consent for this happen when this is required.
We may also use external companies to process personal information, such as for archiving purposes. These companies are bound by contractual agreements to ensure information is kept confidential and secure.
How you can get access to your own health records?
You have a right under the GDPR 2018 to request access to view or to obtain copies of what information the surgery holds about you and to have it amended should it be inaccurate. We now do this free of charge by providing patients with on-line access via our IT system’s “Patient Access” utility. Please ask at reception if you wish to have the ability to access your medical records on-line.
You will need to provide picture ID before we grant you access to your records on-line. You will be able to print your records if they are required by a third party, such as an insurance company or solicitor. Requests for access can be made in person, by email to Practice manager email@example.com or via our site.
Could anyone else apply to see my records?
In exceptional circumstances, i.e. if withholding information may result in harm to an individual, including another member of staff, or may prejudice the reduction of crime, information may be shared. Apart from this, in the event of any one not involved in your care or treatment asks to see information that we hold about you, for example a relative, friend, carers or solicitor, we would contact you to obtain your written consent.
Can any information be withheld?
There are circumstances when we may find that information will be disclosed in relation to an individual other that yourself. Unless that individual gives us written consent then we cannot disclose that part of your record. This is referred to as third party information.
We may also find it necessary in some circumstances to withhold information that may cause serious harm or distress to yourself or another person.
Should you have any concerns about how your information is managed at the GP, please contact the GP or the Practice Manager. If you are still unhappy following a review by the GP practice, you can then complain to the Information Commissioners Office (ICO) via www.ico.org.uk.
If you are happy for your data to be extracted and used for the purposes described in this fair processing notice then you do not need to do anything.
If you do not want your personal data being extracted and leaving the GP practice for any of the purposes described, you need to let us know as soon as possible.
We will then enter clinical codes into your records that will prevent data leaving the practice and / or leaving the central information system at the Health and Social Care Information Centre (HSCIC) for use by secondary providers.
Change of details
It is important that you tell the person treating you if any of your details such as your name or address have changed or if any of your details such as date of birth is incorrect in order for this to be amended. You have a responsibility to inform us of any changes so our records are accurate and up to date for you.
The GRPD 2018 requires organisations to register a notification with the Information Commissioner to describe the purposes for which they process personal and sensitive information.
This information is publicly available on the Information Commissioners Office website www.ico.org.uk.
The practice is registered with the Information Commissioners Office (ICO).
Who is the practice data controller?
The Data Controller, responsible for keeping your information secure and confidential is:
Mitcham Family Practice
55 Mortimer Road
If you would like to know more about how we use your information or if, for any reason, you do not wish to have your information used in any of the ways described in this document please speak to the practice manager/ doctor concerned with your care.