We respect your right to privacy and aim to keep all your health information confidential and secure.
It is important that the NHS keeps accurate and up to date records about your health so that those supporting you can give you the best possible advice, treatment and care. All staff sign a confidentiality agreement as part of their contract of employment.
The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is new European guidance that came into effect from 25th May 2018 setting the ground rules on how your personal data is collected, processed and kept safe and the legal rights that you have in relation to your own data.
So what does this mean for patients. The GDPR sets out the key principles about processing personal data.
- Data must be processed lawfully, fairly and transparently
- It must be collected for specific, explicit and legitimate purposes
- It must be limited to what is necessary for the purposes for which it is processed
- Information must be accurate and kept up to date
- Data must be held securely
- It can only be retained for as long as it is necessary for the reasons it was collected
There are also stronger rights for patients regarding the information that Practices hold about them. These include:
- Being informed about how their data is used
- Patients having access to their own data
- Patients can ask to have incorrect information changed
- Restrict how their data is used
- Move their patient data from one health organisation to another
- The right to object to their patient information being processed (in certain circumstances)
To comply with this new regulation, we reviewed our processes, procedures and protocols updating many of them to comply with the changes.
All of this guidance is captured in law by the Data Protection Act 2018.
One of the core changes sees an update of our Privacy Notice (sometimes known as a Fair Processing Notice). This statement discloses the way we gather, use, disclose, and manage the information we hold about you . It fulfils our legal requirement to protect your privacy.
Click here for a copy of our updated Privacy Notice. This is also available in hardcopy from our reception areas.
The NHS Business Services Authority has also issued a Privacy Statement regarding the way in which that NHS organisation manages the information it receives from GP Practices and Pharmacies on the prescriptions that are sent to them to fund the medication and appliances that are dispensed to you.
Click here for a copy of the Privacy Statement from NHS Business Services Authority.
One of the other changes linked to the new guidelines relates to data subject access requests (SARs). An individual can make a SAR to any organisation that they believe is processing their personal data. This request must be in writing or by E Mail. We have also created a form for patients to complete. Under the new guidance, responses will be made within one calendar month (30 days). An extension of 2 months can be allowed if necessary taking into account the complexity of the request. A fee can no longer be charged unless the request is manifestly unfounded or excessive, in which case a fee may be charged or the request refused.
Click here for a copy of the form to complete if you are making a subject access request.
Our Senior Information Risk Office (incorporating our Data Protection Manager) is our Managing Partner, Garry Whiting. Initial enquiries regarding Data Protection or matters of confidentiality should be made to him at the Practice.
We also have a Data Protection Officer, who is at arm's length to the day to day activities of the Practice. This is Mr Howard Green. His contact details are in our Privacy Notice.