The staff at this practice record information about you and your health so that you can receive the right care and treatment. We need to record this information, together with the details of the care you receive, because it may be needed if we see you again.
We may use some of this information for other reasons, for example, to help us to protect the health of the general public generally, to plan for the future, to train staff and to carry out medical and other health research for the benefit of everyone.
We are currently involved in research studies for which we provide anonymised information from patients’ notes. The risk of you being identified from this information is extremely low as all directly identifiable details (name, address, postcode, NHS number, full date of birth) are removed from your notes before they are collected for research, and automatic programs to de-personalise any free text (non structured or coded data) are run after information is collected. Individual patients’ records are added into a much larger anonymous database, containing records from millions of patients across the UK. This information is used by researchers outside this practice. The database to which we contribute anonymised records is known as The Health Improvement Network (THIN). This data may be anonymously linked to other data, such as hospital data. This database is managed by a company outside the NHS which does not have access to your personal details, only to anonymous medical records. The data are used for research into such topics as drug safety, disease patterns, prescribing patterns, health economics and public health. Many of these studies provide useful information to medical staff on diseases, the use of drugs or outcomes of disease or treatment.
These studies may be performed by academic researchers or commercial companies amongst others. However, no researcher has access to your full details such as your name and address, initials or your full date of birth. The researchers are not given information about the GP nor the practice name, address or post code.
If you would like to opt out of this data collection scheme, please let your doctor know and no data from your records will be collected for use in research. This will not affect your care in any way.
If anything to do with the research would require that you provide additional information about yourself, you will be contacted to see if you are willing to take part: You will not be identified in any published results.
A list of published research using the THIN database can be found at http://csdmruk.cegedim.com/THINBibliography.pdf or please contact Michelle Page on telephone number 0207554 0663 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for a paper copy.
Note that you have a right of access to your health records. If at any time you would like to know more, or have any concerns about how we use your information, you can speak to the Practice Manager.
Confidentiality & Medical Records
The practice complies with data protection and access to medical records legislation. Identifiable information about you will be shared with others in the following circumstances:
- To provide further medical treatment for you e.g. from district nurses and hospital services.
- To help you get other services e.g. from the social work department. This requires your consent.
- When we have a duty to others e.g. in child protection cases anonymised patient information will also be used at local and national level to help the Health Board and Government plan services e.g. for diabetic care.
If you do not wish anonymous information about you to be used in such a way, please let us know.
Reception and administration staff require access to your medical records in order to do their jobs. These members of staff are bound by the same rules of confidentiality as the medical staff.
Freedom of Information
Information about the General Practioners and the practice required for disclosure under this act can be made available to the public. All requests for such information should be made to the practice manager.
Access to Records
In accordance with the Data Protection Act 1998 and Access to Health Records Act, patients may request to see their medical records. Such requests should be made through the practice manager and may be subject to an administration charge. No information will be released without the patient consent unless we are legally obliged to do so.
We make every effort to give the best service possible to everyone who attends our practice.
However, we are aware that things can go wrong resulting in a patient feeling that they have a genuine cause for complaint. If this is so, we would wish for the matter to be settled as quickly, and as amicably, as possible.
To pursue a complaint please contact the practice manager who will deal with your concerns appropriately.
Further written information is available regarding the complaints procedure from reception or can be downloaded from our 'Practice Policies' page.
Violence and Aggression Policy
The NHS operate a zero tolerance policy with regard to violence and abuse and the practice has the right to remove violent patients from the list with immediate effect in order to safeguard practice staff, patients and other persons. Violence in this context includes actual or threatened physical violence or verbal abuse which leads to fear for a person’s safety. In this situation we will notify the patient in writing of their removal from the list and record in the patient’s medical records the fact of the removal and the circumstances leading to it.