Confidentiality and Medical Records

In order to protect the interests of our patients, please read the following information regarding the holding of medical and personal information. Please read it before you register as accepting this information is implicit in registering with our practice.

Information held at the surgery is, in general, a person’s medical history. Certain necessary personal details are also kept in order, so that we can contact patients and correspond with them when necessary. We make every effort to ensure this information is always accurate and updated. Please ensure that you let us know any address or telephone number changes as soon as possible. Information about a patient’s occupation may be held if it becomes medically relevant.

Information may be kept both on the patient’s computer record or/and in hard copy.

The medical information held about a patient may be passed to other clinicians such as hospital consultants, other doctors, other clinics, midwifes, health visitors or nurses including the community nurses, where it is felt necessary to ensure good medical care. Your records may, when absolutely necessary, be seen by reception and administration staff within the surgery. All staff, whether clinical or administrative, are bound to maintain strict confidentiality.

When a report is requested from an insurance company or mortgage company, the doctors will only send a report with the patient’s consent. There will always be a charge for this service as it is non NHS work. This report may be seen by the patient, and it may be held before it is sent to enable the patient to see it. A patient must indicate clearly when they give consent, if they wish to see a report before it is sent away. These reports are then held in the surgery for six months before being shredded.

If a solicitor requests a patient to consent to the copying of all their medical records, we will write to the patient to query this. Patients must be aware that sometimes this information is shown to third parties, and may be used in court.

We may use your mobile phone number for sending reminder or information texts to you. If this is not acceptable, please tell a member of staff.

Patients may access their medical records for a particular reason. The request must be made in writing and the practice has to respond within forty days. A charge may be made to see the notes. It is unusual for people to see their medical records, and it is a good idea to first telephone the practice manager to discuss the matter. The appropriate GP must agree a patient can see their records, and may exclude any part of that record felt not to be in the patient’s best interest to see. Patients may not see information given by a third party.

No one has the right to be told the medical history of another person, except the parents of very young children. We are unable to confirm whether a patient is registered at the practice or divulge information about adult relatives.

We share your medical records with other services treating you. You may choose to decline to have your information shared in this way by speaking to your GP or accessing your online account if you have one. Please note that this could disrupt your care.