The NHS needs data about the patients it treats in order to plan and deliver its services and to ensure that care and treatment provided is safe and effective. The General Practice Data for Planning and Research data collection will help the NHS to improve health and care services for everyone by collecting patient data that can be used to do this. For example patient data can help the NHS to:
- monitor the long-term safety and effectiveness of care
- plan how to deliver better health and care services
- prevent the spread of infectious diseases
- identify new treatments and medicines through health research
GP practices already share patient data for these purposes, but this new data collection will be more efficient and effective.
This means that GPs can get on with looking after their patients, and NHS Digital can provide controlled access to patient data to the NHS and other organisations who need to use it, to improve health and care for everyone.
Opting out of NHS Digital collecting your data (Type 1 Opt-out)
If you do not want your identifiable patient data (personally identifiable data in the diagram above) to be shared outside of your GP practice for purposes except for your own care, you can register an opt-out with your GP practice. This is known as a Type 1 Opt-out.
Type 1 Opt-outs were introduced in 2013 for data sharing from GP practices, but may be discontinued in the future as a new opt-out has since been introduced to cover the broader health and care system, called the National Data Opt-out. If this happens people who have registered a Type 1 Opt-out will be informed. More about National Data Opt-outs is in the section Who we share patient data with.
NHS Digital will not collect any patient data for patients who have already registered a Type 1 Opt-out in line with current policy. If this changes patients who have registered a Type 1 Opt-out will be informed.
If you do not want your patient data shared with NHS Digital, you can register a Type 1 Opt-out with your GP practice. You can register a Type 1 Opt-out at any time. You can also change your mind at any time and withdraw a Type 1 Opt-out.
Data sharing with NHS Digital will start on 1 July 2021.
If you have already registered a Type 1 Opt-out with your GP practice your data will not be shared with NHS Digital.
If you wish to register a Type 1 Opt-out with your GP practice before data sharing starts with NHS Digital, this should be done by returning this form to your GP practice by 23 June 2021 to allow time for processing it. If you have previously registered a Type 1 Opt-out and you would like to withdraw this, you can also use the form to do this. You can send the form by post or email to your GP practice or call 01202 974700 for a form to be emailed out to you.
For more information, please see the video animation below.
Data Opt Out Information Video
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. To find how your medical information is shared with other organisations that use this system, and how you can control this, please read our leaflet about data sharing in SystmOne.
YOU HAVE A CHOICE.
The data sharing option is automatically activated. If you are happy for your information to be used in this way, you do not have to do anything further.
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 have any concerns, please read the Data Sharing leaflet. Once you have read this, if you wish to Opt Out of Data Sharing, restrict certain aspects of your medical record from being shared, or wish to discuss this further, please contact the Practice Manager.
Please read this carefully. It will give you information about how your data is shared for the purposes of direct patient care.
In May 2018, the strict rules about how this data can and cannot be used were strengthened. The NHS is committed to keeping patient information safe and always being clear about how it is used. You can choose whether your confidential patient information is used for research and planning. Please visit this link for information https://www.nhs.uk/your-nhs-data-matters/
Your electronic health record
As a practice we aim to provide you with the best quality care that is safe and effective. We now work with a wider team to provide a comprehensive range of health related services to you and your family. The practice uses the clinical computer system called SystmOne, which enables your full electronic record to be shared to anyone involved in providing direct care to you, across different healthcare services.
Why is sharing my health information important?
Your electronic health record contains lots of information about you, including your medical history, the types of medication you take, any allergies you have and demographic information like your home address, and your next of kin.
In many cases, particularly for patients with complex conditions, the shared record plays a vital role in delivering the best care. Health and social care professionals can ensure a coordinated response, taking into account all aspects of a person’s physical and mental health. Whilst some patients have extensive knowledge of their conditions and care requirements, this is not true for everyone. Many patients are understandably not able to provide a full account of their care. The shared record means patients do not have to repeat their medical histories at every care setting, or make guesses about their previous care.
A shared record ensures health or social care professionals always have the most accurate, up to date information. They can rely on their colleagues, sharing accurate and relevant data in a timely way, to provide you with safe and efficient care.
You have choices about whether or not your information is available to other providers who care for you.
To provide the best care, your electronic health record will be made available to other services involved in your care. Until you are registered at one of the care services, no information about you will be shared to them.
Although your record is automatically setup to share your information, you can ask your doctor for this option to be switched off. This will mean none of the information recorded by your doctor will be visible at any other care service.
When you visit other care services that use SystmOne you can give your permission to override your previous dissent, allowing them to view your record including any items marked as private.
If you would prefer that the override option above is never made available, you have the ability to request your doctor prevents it. However, this means your data will never be available at other care services.
Which services could I go to that could access my medical record with my consent?:
- Community services such as district nurses, therapists and diabetes services
- Child health services that undertake scheduling of treatments such as vaccinations
- Urgent care organisations such as Minor Injury Units and Out of Hours services
- Palliative care hospices and community services
- Offender health – care providers within the health units
- NHS Hospitals (including A/E Departments) and Mental Health Trusts
- Social care – registered and regulated professionals within social care organisations coordinating care (not social care providers)
Providing consent to view
When you start receiving care from a care service (that uses SystmOne), you have the right to either agree or disagree that they may view your SystmOne record. The health or social care professional seeing you should ask your permission for them to view your electronic record.
If you answer YES: That care service will be able to view information recorded on your electronic record by other care services [excluding any data you have requested to keep private (see below)].
If you answer NO: That care service will not be able to see any information recorded anywhere else (even if your record has been set to share from any other care services).
As a patient, you have control over who can see your health information. Even if you give permission on one occasion, you can still change this at any time.
Can I choose what is made available?
To give you the most personalised care, it is recommended that you share your whole health record with every service that cares for you. However, you have control over your record and have the choice to specify specific elements of the record you don’t want to be shared. For example, if you have had a consultation about a particularly sensitive matter, you can ask for this section of the record to be marked as private. That way, even if you consent for another service to see your record, that consultation will not be shown. If a consent override is used, then consultations marked as private will be accessible.
What choices do I have?
When thinking about how your information is shared, you can specify three main controls:
- Do you enable your record to be shared at all? Remember that even if you have agreed to sharing out from this organization, you still get to decide if another care professional can view your record at the time that you see them. You do not have to make the same choice for every organization you come into contact with.
- You can specify entries in your record that you want to remain confidential. These can only be viewed by the care service they were originally recorded at (unless the consent override is used for the reasons stated above). You can then decide if the rest of your record is shared at each care setting you visit.
- Saying no at this stage means no other care service can see any of your record. If you don’t want your record to ever be viewed by anyone you have a further choice to request that consent override is prevented
As a Practice we would strongly advise patients to register for online services. This will allow you to order prescription and book appointments over the web. Once you are registered, you can ask for extended rights to view your medical record.
Locally the people who are most likely to view your medical record and provide additional valuable information are the community nurses, health visitors, podiatry, and diabetic screening.
What do I need to do now?
- If you are happy for people providing care to yourself seeing your records, do nothing.
- If you are not happy for other organisation who are providing care to you to see your medical records, then please let the practice know and we will turn off the consent on your records, preventing anyone seeing your records.
If you would like more information on how your data is shared please talk to us.