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 Practitioners 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.
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.
Proxy Access Information
Proxy access refers to having access to patient online services on behalf of the patient. This may include children and relatives where a power of attorney is in place. Proxy Access is usually with the patient's consent. To obtain formal proxy access to a patient’s record, a person must register at the practice for online access
Proxy access for parents/carers applying on behalf of a patient
For children aged 0-10 years:
- A parent, guardian, or carer with proxy access will be able to book appointments and order repeat prescriptions for the child. They can also have access to the parts of the child’s patient record that have been released for online access.
- To apply for standard access for child (i.e. to view appointments and repeat prescriptions) consent to proxy form will need to be completed and the required supporting documents provided.
- The parent, guardian or carer must show proof of ID and proof of parental right e.g. full birth certificate, at the time of requesting proxy access for their child.
- Please note that we are only allowed to enable proxy access to a child's record with proof of parental rights. If there are any limitations regarding parental access to the child or their information which have been imposed by a Court or Social Services it must be declared, and the application may therefore be declined or withdrawn.
- Any requests from parents or carers of children under 11 years of age for access to the child’s Detailed Coded Record must first be authorised by a GP.
For children aged 11-15 years
From their 11th birthday, access to a child's online record is switched off and neither the child nor the parents can access these services at either standard or enhanced level. As the child approaches their 16th birthday they can register for online services in their own right. The practice does not offer online services to young people aged between 11-15 years. However, access may be granted to a parent, guardian, or carer who holds a power of attorney for health and welfare of the patient, or where the patient's usual GP judges it to be in the patient’s best interest
Proxy access for 16 years old
- Once a young person reaches the age of 16 it is reasonable to assume that most are competent to access their own records or appoint a proxy such as their parents to do so. However, this may not be the case for patients with learning difficulties or some other disabilities. In such cases a Mental Capacity assessment may be conducted by the GP.
- Requests for proxy access to the record of a patient aged 16 and over are treated the same as for an adult and should, where possible, be made by the patient themselves
Proxy access for an adult who lacks capacity
Where a patient lacks capacity to give their free and fully informed permission for proxy access, access may be granted to a family member or carer who holds a power of attorney for health and welfare of the patient, or where the patient's usual GP judges it to be in the patient’s best interest. The Proxy access application form will need to be completed for proxy access on behalf of someone who lacks capacity and returned with a covering letter to the practice.
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