NHS England aims to link information from all the different places where you receive care, such as hospital, community service and us your GP Surgery. This will allow them to compare the care you received in one area against the care you received in another.
Information will be held in a secure environment called the Health and Social Care Information Centre (HSCIC). The role of the HSCIC is to ensure that high quality data is used appropriately to improve patient care. The HSCIC has legal powers to collect and analyse data from all providers of NHS care. They are committed, and legally bound, to the very highest standards of privacy and confidentiality to ensure that your confidential information is protected at all times.
This data can also be used, with permission, for research purposes. If you do not wish to share data for research, you can opt out by here.
Summary Care Record (SCR)
Your Summary Care Record is a short summary of your GP medical records. It tells other health and care staff who care for you about the medicines you take and your allergies.
This means they can give you better care if you need health care away from your usual doctor’s surgery:
- in an emergency
- when you’re on holiday
- when your surgery is closed
- at out-patient clinics
- when you visit a pharmacy
Ask your doctor to include additional information on your SCR
You can add more information to your SCR by asking your doctor. They can add extra details from your medical notes, including:
- health problems like dementia or diabetes
- details of your carer
- your treatment preferences
- communication needs, for example if you have hearing difficulties or need an interpreter
This will help medical staff care for you properly, and respect your choices, when you need care away from your GP surgery. This is because having more information on your SCR means they will have a better understanding of your needs and preferences.
When you are treated away from your usual doctor’s surgery, the health care staff there can’t see your GP medical records. Looking at your SCR can speed up your care and make sure you are given the right medicines and treatment.
Protecting your SCR information
Staff will ask your permission to look at your SCR (except in an emergency where you are unconscious, for example) and only staff with the right levels of security clearance can access the system, so your information is secure. You can ask an organisation to show you a record of who has looked at your SCR – this is called a Subject Access Request.
SCRs improve care, but if you don’t want to have one you can opt out. Tell your GP or fill in an SCR opt-out form and hand it to a receptionist.
For more information:
- Phone 0300 123 3020
- or visit: digital.nhs.uk
SystmOne Data Sharing
The practice uses a clinical computer system called SystmOne to store your medical information. The system is also used by other GP practices, Child Health Services, Community Services, Hospitals, Out of Hours, Palliative Care services and many more. This means your information can be shared with other clinicians so that everyone caring for you is fully informed about your medical history including medication and allergies. You can control how your medical information is shared with other organisations that use this system.
- Sharing Out – This controls whether your information stored in the practice can be shared with other NHS services (i.e. made shareable)
- Sharing In – This controls whether information made shareable at other NHS care services can be viewed by us, your GP practice, or not. (i.e. shared in)
Benefits of sharing information
Sharing information can help improve understanding, responses to different treatments and potential solutions. Information will also help to:
- Provide better information to out of hours and emergency services
- Prevent Prescribing of medication to which you may already have an allergy
- Make more informed prescribing decisions about drugs and dosages Avoid unnecessary duplication in prescribing
- Increase clinician confidence when providing care
- Results of investigations, such as X-rays and laboratory tests
- Reduce referrals, ambulance journey admissions, tests, time wastage and visits to healthcare premises
- Find out basic details about you, such as address and next of kin.
Do I have a choice?
Yes. You have the right to prevent confidential information about you from being shared or used for any purpose other than providing your care, except in special circumstances. If you do not want information that identifies you to be shared outside this Practice, please let us know. This will prevent your confidential information being used other than where necessary by law.
Objecting on behalf of others
If you are a carer and have a Lasting Power of Attorney for health and welfare then you can object on behalf of the patient who lacks capacity. If you do not hold a Lasting Power of Attorney then you can raise your specific concerns with the patient’s GP.
If you have parental responsibility and your child is not able to make an informed decision for themselves, then you can make a decision about information sharing on behalf of your child. If your child is competent then this must be their decision.