How to manage your data
Information about your health and care helps us improve your individual care, speed up diagnosis, plan your local services and research new treatments.
In May 2018 strict rules about how this data can and cannot be used were strengthened.
You can choose whether your confidential patient information is used for research and planning.
To find out more visit https://www.nhs.uk/your-nhs-data-matters/.
Sharing information to provide better patient care
The NHS organisations in Dudley work together and share information to ensure that the care you receive is effective, good quality and meets your needs.
Healthcare professionals working with you keep records about your health and any care or treatment you receive.
These records may be written and held by the professionals involved in your care, such as GPs, and nurses, and may be shared with other health professionals.
Some or all of your records may be held on a number of computer systems. Your records are used to guide and record the treatment and care you receive. Your records are vital in helping to ensure you receive good quality and timely care.
The records we keep about your health care may include:
- Basic details that you have given us, like your address or next of kin
- Notes and reports about any treatment and care you need or receive results of your tests
- Relevant information from other professionals, relatives or those who care for you or know you well
- Any contacts you have with us such as visits or appointments.
We may share information with the following main partner organisations:
- NHS England
- NHS Trusts (Hospitals, CCGs – Safeguarding & Continuing Healthcare, CSUs)
- Healthcare Providers
- Other General Practitioners (GPs)
- Ambulance Services
We may also share your information, with your consent and subject to strict sharing protocols about how best it will be used with:
- Social Services
- Education Services
- Local Authorities
- Voluntary Sector Providers
- Private Sector
If you have concerns about the information that you share with a professional involved in your care, please discuss with them how it is kept and what will be shared with others.
The law protects your right to confidentiality and we will ensure your records are kept confidential at all times. If you do not want your information to be shared please speak to your GP.
What are the legal duties of public organisations?
Health and Social Care Safety and Quality Act 2015
The sharing of information for direct care supports the change in legislation by the introduction of the Health and Social Care Safety and Quality Act 2015. This act, introduced in October 2015, outlined that health and social care professionals had a duty to share information to support the delivery of care to patients with other professionals involved in their care.
Data Protection Act 2018
The Data Protection Act (2018, S30) has specific information on health and social care data.
While information in the Act can seem complex the Information Commissioners Office has produced useful guidance on their website – including for General Practice. There is also a very useful Guide to Confidentiality in Health and Social Care.