ATTENTION - THIS UPDATE INCLUDES IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT THE CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19) AND YOUR INFORMATION - PLEASE READ CAREFULLY
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 communicated via an update to this Privacy Notice.
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.
Please be aware that we may use new providers or suppliers to help us quickly adapt during the outbreak and continue your care effectively. For example, we may use a new provider for video consultations. We may not be able to add these to our transparency materials right away, we apologise for this but please be assured all our processors are bound by contract to protect to your data.
During COVID-19 we may ask you to send a photograph of you bruise / skin condition /symptom that you are concerned about whilst we conduct virtual consultations. This photograph will be used by the clinician to determine any medical treatment necessary and will be added to your medical record.
Please note that, where this is sent from your personal email, we cannot guarantee its security we therefore we ask that you only include your NHS number alongside your photograph in the email. The photograph should only be of the area requested and no other person should be visible in the shot.
If you are concerned about how your information is being used, please contact our DPO using the contact details provided in this Privacy Notice.
We take your privacy very seriously. We are registered with the Information Commissioner’s Office as a Data Controller and our registration number can be found by searching the ICO Register using This Link.
We aim to provide you with the highest quality health care. To do this we must keep records about you, your health and the care we have provided or plan to provide to you.
Your doctor and other health professionals caring for you, such as nurses or physiotherapists, keep records about your health and treatment so that they are able to provide you with the best possible care.
These records are called your ‘health care record’ and may be stored in paper form or on computer and electronic systems and may include Personal Data;
basic details about you, such as address, date of birth, NHS number, and next of kin
as well as Sensitive Personal Data;
contact we have had with you, such as clinical visits
notes and reports about your health
details and records about your treatment and care
results of x-rays, laboratory tests etc
Healthcare providers are permitted to collect, store, use and share this information under Data Protection Legislation which has a specific section related to healthcare information.
If you have any questions or wish to make a request in relation to your information, please contact us using the details on our main page or contact our Data Protection Officer at email@example.com
Our Data Protection Officer service is provided by Kafico Ltd. When we ask for their support, we will aim to remove any reference to individual patients. Where this is not possible, we will use the minimum necessary to allow us to obtain advice and support.