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 Practioners 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 submitted in writing 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.
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.
Dealing with patients who fail to attend booked appointments
The NHS Constitution sets out clearly what patients, the public and staff can expect from the NHS and what the NHS expects from them in return. There are things that we can all do for
ourselves and for one another to help it work effectively, and to ensure resources are used responsibly. This includes:
- Keeping appointments, or cancelling within reasonable time.
Failing to attend a booked appointment, not only wastes practice resources, it denies another patient the opportunity to be seen.
Cancellations can be taken by phone on 01538 753114 or online via https://patient.emisaccess.co.uk/.
DNA (Did Not Attend) Policy
A 'DNA' occurs when a patient either:
- Fails to keep an appointment without notifying the surgery
- Cancels an appointment with so little notice it impossible to offer the appointment to another patient.
On these occasions an entry is recorded in the patient’s medical record. A monthly search is conducted to identify patients who have a record of multiple DNA entries.
- When a patient has failed to keep two appointments within a twelve month period, a letter will be sent detailing the appointments that were missed and requesting the patient a) contact the practice with a reason and b) take care to avoid a re-occurrence.
- If the patient fails to attend a further appointment within a twelve month period, a further letter will be sent to advise them of the missed appointment and also advise that, if a further appointment is missed then the patient will be at risk of de-registration. When three DNAs have occurred within a short period of time, the practice may decide to withdraw the option of bookable appointments for a defined time period. During this time, the patient would need to attend Open Access or nurse Triage to access advice and treatment.
- If the patient misses a fourth appointment within a twelve month period, their removal from the practice list without further notice will be considered.
The practice will take into account mitigating medical circumstances prior to issuing letters under this policy but may contact patients and/or carers to discuss repeated non-attendance.