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 2021 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.
Health Records/Confidentiality and Privacy Notices
We ask you for information to ensure that you can receive proper care and treatment. The main reasons for which your information may be needed/kept include:-
- giving healthcare and treatment
- looking after the health of the general public
- managing and planning the NHS
- reviewing care to ensure the highest standard
- training and research
Everyone working for the NHS has a legal obligation to keep information about you confidential and legislation controls the sharing of information.
You have the right to access your records - the Practice Manager can advise you of this procedure.
Patients are able to view and/or have copies of their medical record. Please apply in writing to the Practice Manager or ask at reception.
In order to continue to be able to send you TEXT Messages (for appointment reminders and invites for vaccinations etc) we need to have your explicit consent.We will not use your mobile number for any other reason except your direct healthcare. Please send the word START to 078 0000 8113 if you wish to receive TEXT messages or STOP if you do not wish to receive these messages. You can opt in or out at any time. This mobile number is only for this purpose.
Privacy Notices and information
(Last updated 18.12.20)
Please click here for our Surgery's Privacy Notices for
Patient Privacy Notice (PDF, 358KB)
Child friendly privacy notice
Privacy Notice for Suppliers
Q&A re data sharing in our Primary Care Network
Summary Care Record letter and consent form
NHS Digital use of patient data for Planning or Research
Patient data from GP medical records, stored by GP practices in England is used every day to improve health, care and related services through planning and research, helping to find better treatments and improve patient care. The NHS is introducing an improved way to share this information - called the General Practice Data for Planning and Research data collection.
NHS Digital will collect, analyse, publish, and share this patient data to improve health and care services for everyone, including your individual health care needs. This includes:
- informing and developing health and social care policy
- planning and Commissioning health and care services
- taking steps to protect public health (including managing and monitoring the coronavirus pandemic)
- in exceptional circumstances, providing you with individual care
- enabling healthcare and scientific research
Any data that NHS Digital collects will only be used for health and care purposes. It is never shared with marketing or insurance companies.
What patient data they collect
This collection will start from 1 July 2021. Patient data will be collected from GP medical records about:
- any living patient registered at a GP
- any patient who died after the data collection started, and was previously registered at a GP practice in England when the data collection started
They will not collect your name or where you live.
Other data that could directly identify you, for example:
- NHS number,
- General Practice Local Patient Number,
- full postcode
- date of birth,
Is replaced with unique codes which are produced by de-identification software before the data is shared with NHS Digital.
This process is called pseudonymisation and means that no one will be able to directly identify you in the data.
Opting out of NHS Digital using your data
If you do not wish to have your personal identifiable data to be used to assist the NHS in developing new improved care and treatment in this way, you can Opt Out.
Type 1 Opt Out – This means your individual medical data will not leave the practice. It will not be shared with NHS Digital or any other organisation except where it is for your individual direct care.
How to apply this – the patient has to inform the practice by way of a form or verbally that they wish to apply a Type 1 Opt Out.
National Data Opt Out – This means that a Patient’s data will be shared with NHS Digital but will not be used for Planning or Research.
How to apply this opt out – The patient must go online to ‘Your Data Matters’ or telephone them to apply their own preferences - 0300 303 5678 . The GP practice cannot do this for you.
A Patient may also
Opt out of having a Summary Care Record - SCR
A Summary Care Record is a minimal data set which is shared by the Practice to create a basic record in NHS Digital. This will be used by other NHS Organisations to provide the patient with individual health care. The record contains important health care information such as current conditions, medication, and allergies. This is important for emergency care.
How to request this – complete form and send to practice.
If you wish to have a Type 1 Opt Out applied before the first NHS Digital data collection, you will need to inform your practice by 23rd June 2021. You can request any of the opt outs at any time, and your data will not be collected for future data collections.
No Personal Identifiable data is used for Planning or Research.
Further information regarding this topic can be found online – here
Opt Out Forms
Type 1 Opt Out Form (EXTERNAL LINK)
SCR patient consent preference form (EXTERNAL LINK)
You can opt in or out of any or all of the data sharing initiatives at any time - please complete and return the Opt in /out form to the surgery or contact the Practice Manager to discuss your options further - thank you.
opt in or out of data sharing - adult
opt in or out of data sharing - child
If at anytime you would like to know more about how we use your information you can speak to the person in charge of your care or to Caroline Toone (Practice Manager).
If you supply us with your email address we may use it to keep you updated with Services at the Surgery.