GP Practice Privacy Notice
Protecting Your Data
This privacy notice explains why the practice collects and processes information about you and how that information may be used.
We are legally responsible for ensuring that all personal data that we hold and use is done so in a way that meets the data protection principles under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and Data Protection Act 2018. This notice also explains how we handle that data and keep it safe.
The GP Practice also has a Caldicott Guardian. A Caldicott Guardian is a senior person within a health or social care organisation, preferably a health professional, who makes sure that the personal information about those who use its services is used legally, ethically and appropriately, and that confidentiality is maintained. The Caldicott Guardian for our practice is Angela Pickering: contact via the email address email@example.com
The health care professionals who provide you with care maintain records about your health and any treatment or care you have received previously (e.g. Hospital, GP Surgery, Walk-in clinic, etc.). These records help to provide you with the best possible healthcare.
NHS health records may be electronic, on paper or a mixture of both, 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 hold 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 long do we keep your personal data?
Whenever we collect or process your data, we will only keep it for as long as is necessary for the purpose it was collected. For a GP practice, we comply with the Records Management NHS Code of Practice
To ensure you receive the best possible care, your records are used to facilitate the care you receive. 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 GP 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. Where we do this, we take strict measures to ensure that individual patients cannot be identified.
Sometimes your information may be requested to be used for research purposes – the surgery will always gain your consent before releasing the information for this purpose.
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:
- General Data Protection act 2018
- Human Rights Act 1998
- Common Law Duty of Confidentiality
- Health and Social Care Act 2012
- NHS Codes of Confidentiality and Information Security
- Information: To Share or Not to Share Review
Every member of staff who works for the Practice or another 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 for example Child/Adult Protection and Serious Criminal Activity.
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 or receive information from the following organisations:-
- NHS Trusts / Foundation Trusts
- NHS Commissioning Support Units
- Independent Contractors such as dentists, opticians, pharmacists
- Private Sector Providers
- Voluntary Sector Providers
- Ambulance Trusts
- Clinical Commissioning Groups
- Social Care Services
- NHS Digital
- Local Authorities
- Education Services
- Fire and Rescue Services
- Police & Judicial Services
- 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.
What are your rights over your personal data?
You have the following rights over your data we hold:
Subject Access Rights – you can request access to and or copies of personal data we hold about you, free of charge (subject to exemptions) and provided to you within 1 calendar month. We request that you provide us with adequate information in writing to process your request such as full name, address, date of birth, NHS number and details of your request and documents to verify your identity so we can process the request efficiently. On processing a request, there may be occasions when information may be withheld if the organisation believes that releasing the information to you could cause serious harm to your physical or mental health. Information may also be withheld if another person (i.e. third party) is identified in the record, and they do not want their information disclosed to you. However, if the other person was acting in their professional capacity in caring for you, in normal circumstances they could not prevent you from having access to that information.
- Right to rectification – The correction of personal data when incorrect, out of date or incomplete which must be acted upon within 1 calendar month of receipt of such request. Please ensure the GP practice has the correct contact details for you.
- Right to withdraw consent – If we have your explicit consent for any processing we do, you have the right to withdraw that consent at any time
- Right to Erasure (‘be forgotten’)
If we obtain consent for any processing we do, you have the right to have that data deleted / erased. Please note this does not apply to health records.
- Right to Data Portability – If we obtain consent for any processing we do, you have the right to have data provided to you in a commonly used and machine readable format such as excel spreadsheet, csv file.
- Right to object to processing – you have the right to object to processing however please note if we can demonstrate compelling legitimate grounds which outweighs the interest of you then processing can continue. If we didn’t process any information about you and your health care if would be very difficult for us to care and treat you.
- Right to restriction of processing – This right enables individuals to suspend the processing of personal information, for example, if you want to establish its accuracy or the reason for processing it.
To request a copy or request access to information we hold about you and / or to request information to be corrected if it is inaccurate, it must be made to the Practice Manager.
Objections / Complaints
Should you have any concerns about how your information is managed at the GP, please contact 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 their website www.ico.org.uk/concerns or call on 03031231133
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 General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and Data Protection Act 2018requires 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 Data Controller?
The Data Controller, responsible for keeping your information secure and confidential is Mosslands Medical Practice contact via email address firstname.lastname@example.org
Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and your information
The ICO recognises the unprecedented challenges the NHS and other health professionals are facing during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
The ICO also recognise that ‘Public bodies may require additional collection and sharing of personal data to protect against serious threats to public health.’
The Government have also taken action in respect of this and on 20th March 2020 the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care issued a Notice under Regulation 3(4) of The Health Service (Control of Patient Information) Regulations 2002 requiring organisations such as GP Practices to use your information to help GP Practices and other healthcare organisations to respond to and deal with the COVID-19 pandemic.
In order to look after your healthcare needs during this difficult time, we may urgently need to share your personal information, including medical records, with clinical and non clinical staff who belong to organisations that are permitted to use your information and need to use it to help deal with the Covid-19 pandemic. This could (amongst other measures) consist of either treating you or a member of your family and enable us and other healthcare organisations to monitor the disease, assess risk and manage the spread of the disease.
Please be assured that we will only share information and health data that is necessary to meet yours and public healthcare needs.
The Secretary of State for Health and Social Care has also stated that these measures are temporary and will expire on 30th September 2020 unless a further extension is required. Any further extension will be will be provided in writing and we will communicate the same to you.
Please also note that the data protection and electronic communication laws do not stop us from sending public health messages to you, either by phone, text or email as these messages are not direct marketing.
It may also be necessary, where the latest technology allows us to do so, to use your information and health data to facilitate digital consultations and diagnoses and we will always do this with your security in mind.
If you are concerned about how your information is being used, please contact our DPO using the contact details provided in this Privacy Notice.
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.
This practice is supporting vital coronavirus (COVID-19) planning and research by sharing your data with NHS Digital. For more information about this see the General Practice Transparency Notice for GPES Data for Pandemic Planning and Research (COVID-19).