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Medical Records and Confidentiality

confidentialityKeeping your medical records up to date is important to have a complete picture of your health. If you are given results or letters by hospital doctors or other healthcare practitioners we would be grateful if you would allow reception to have a copy in order to enter the details into your notes held here.

Please would you help us to help you by letting us know any change in your address or contact phone number. We are also keen to identify patients that care for others and if you are a carer please let us know.

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 services department. This requires your consent.
  • When we have a duty to protect others e.g. in child protection cases and in infections covered by Infectious Diseases legislation. Anonymised patient information will also be used at local and national level to help the Primary Care Trust 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.

We keep computerised records. Under the Data Protection Act 1998 you have right to see what is on the computer and all written notes, unless the doctor feels it would be harmful to your health. If you would like to view your records please discuss this with Mr Andrew Slater, our Practice Manager. If you wish to make paper copies of your notes there is a 40p/sheet charge to cover the costs.
 
From time to time we may be approached by third parties for details of your medical records.  Because we respect the confidentiality of information that you give us we will not release details of your personal notes without your consent.

Calls to the surgery may be recorded for training and audit purposes. 


As part of this Practice’s contribution to research and development in the fields of medicine and pharmacology from time to time we may provide completely anonymous treatment information to certain third party organisations.  No individual is ever identified from the information, and we all, as potential patients, stand to benefit from this work.  If you would like more information about this matter please write to the Practice Manager, Mr Slater, for details.

Patients Rights and Responsibilities

You will be treated with respect and as a partner in your care. Being a partner means you have responsibilities too.

We will:

  • Ensure our patients have 24-hour access to medical advice.
  • Aim for you to have access to a suitably qualified medical professional within 48 hours of your initial contact during surgery hours, or in an urgent case, the same day.
  • Work in partnership with you to achieve the best medical care possible.
  • Involve you and listen to your opinions and views in all aspects of your medical care.
  • The prevention of disease, illness and injury is a primary concern.


The medical staff will advise and inform you of the steps you can take to promote good health and a healthy lifestyle. We would respectfully ask that you: 

  • Let us know if you intend to cancel an appointment or are running late. If you arrive late for your appointment, the clinician may not be able to see you.
  • Treat staff with courtesy and respect. Reception staff may have to ask some personal questions to assist us in providing you with the best service
  • Inform the practice staff of any alterations in your circumstances, such as change of surname, address or telephone number. Please ensure that we have your correct telephone number, even if it’s ex-directory.

As patients, you are responsible for your own health and that of any dependents. It is important that you adhere to information and advice given to you by health professionals, and co-operate with the practice in endeavouring to keep you healthy.

Patients with long term conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes mellitus, heart disease and asthma should have at least an annual review. We encourage you to do this in your birthday month as it easier to remember for you and spreads workload for us. Your review is an important time to consider whether your treatment is appropriate and to check that your condition is appropriately controlled. Please do attend as responsible prescribing on our behalf does require that we stay in touch with you and monitor your progress.

Have a read of this article for more information about how to use consultations efficiently.

Aggressive Behaviour

We like helping our patients and will do our best for you, so please be nice to us too, even if at times you are frustrated. Most disagreements or misunderstandings are best sorted out by talking and you are free to use our complaints procedure is there is anything you are unhappy about.

If you really must be mean and nasty, please read the next few paragraphs before you upset someone.

The practice considers aggressive behaviour to be any personal, abusive and/or aggressive comments, cursing and/or swearing, physical contact and/or aggressive gestures.

The practice will request the removal of any patient from the practice list who is aggressive or abusive towards a doctor, member of staff, other patient, or who damages property.

All instances of actual physical abuse on any doctor or member of staff, by a patient or their relatives will be reported to the police as an assault.

Teaching

We are a teaching practice and frequently have supervised doctors, nursing and medical students training at the surgery. Having learners in the practice benefits us as we stay in touch with new developments and it is sometimes refreshing to have a different opinion about a common problem.

We may ask if you are willing to see these students. This is voluntary. Please feel free to decline if you are not happy with the idea.

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