Policies on this page
- Confidentiality of records
- Your Medical Record
- Freedom of information
- Safeguarding Children & Young People Policy Statement
- Access to your own records
- Your medical Records
- Violence Policy
- DNA Policy
- Chaperone Policy
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.
Freedom of Information Act 2000
Your rights in relation to the Freedom of Information Act 2000.
As a patient of this Practice, you are entitled to request information about this Practice under the NHS. Sometimes though, some or all of the information cannot be provided and we will explain the reasons why should this occur. It may be that the information is of a sensitive nature, personal or of a confidential nature.
The Freedom of Information Act does not change the right of patients to protection of their patient confidentiality in accordance with Article 8 of the Human Rights Convention, the Data Protection Act and at Common Law. Maintaining the right to patient confidentiality continues to be an important commitment on our part.
From January 2005, we as a Practice now have a legal responsibility to respond to our patient requests for information about the Practice that is publicly available. The Practice will respond to any such requests received in writing within 20 days, however, there may be a charge for the information requested, but you will be informed of the charge and requested to pay prior to the information being released.
Data Protection Act 1998
Your rights to see any personal data held on computer and on paper are covered under the Data Protection Act 1998 (DPA).
The DPA provides for right of access to personal information about yourself held by public authorities and private bodies regardless of the form in which it is held. You may be entitled to see your medical records, and you can make an appointment with the Practice Manager to discuss this, please note however, a fee is payable for this service.
Safeguarding Children and Young People Statement
Matching Green Surgery is committed to safeguarding the welfare of all the children, young people and vulnerable adults. We will make their welfare our highest priority and work with by taking all reasonable steps to protect them from neglect, physical, sexual or emotional harm. All members of staff will, at all times, show respect and understanding for the rights, safety and welfare of children and young people, and conduct themselves in a way that reflects the principles of Matching Green Surgery. Where additional support is necessary this will include working with other agencies.
We do this by
- making sure all our members of staff are carefully selected, trained and, as appropriate, supervised
- assessing all risks that children and young people come across and taking steps to minimise and manage them
- letting parents, children and young people know how to voice concerns or how to complain about anything they may not be happy with
- giving parents, children, young people, staff and volunteers information about what we do and what can be expected of us
To help us do this, we have policies on child protection, health and safety, recruitment and training, confidentiality, equality and diversity, complaints, recruitment of ex-offenders, grievance and discipline.
A child or young person is defined as anyone under the age of 18
This policy statement applies to all members of staff of Matching Green Surgery.
Matching Green Surgery is committed to a best practice which safeguards children and young people irrespective of their background and which recognises that a child may be abused regardless of their age, gender, religious beliefs, racial origin or ethnic identity, culture, class, disability or sexual orientation.
If you have any concerns about a child or Vulnerable adult please speak to your GP or Practice Nurse.
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 made through the practice manager 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.
Your medical record
Your doctor and other health professionals caring for you keep records about your health and any treatment you receive. The practice is computerised and all medical consultations and laboratory results are stored on the practice computer system. Your old written records are also stored securely at the practice. These records contain basic details such as address and date of birth, and also a record of all consultations with the practice and other correspondence from NHS organisations or social services. Your records are used to guide professionals in the care they provide to you and to address fully any concerns in the event of complaint
We make every effort to give the best service possible to everyone who attends our practice.
However, we are aware that things can go wrong resulting in a patient feeling that they have a genuine cause for complaint. If this is so, we would wish for the matter to be settled as quickly, and as amicably, as possible.
To pursue a complaint please contact the practice manager who will deal with your concerns appropriately. Further written information is available regarding the complaints procedure from reception.
If you are complaining on beahlf of another person then a consent form needs to be signed.
The manager will acknowledge receipt of your letter within 3 working days and will then conduct a thorough investigation. You will be informed of the outcome of the investigation and any further action within 10 -30 days. You will have an opportunity to discuss the matter after the investigation if you so wish.
If you are not satisfied with the outcome you can contact the Complaints Team at NHS England on 0300 3112233, or email firstname.lastname@example.org. The Postal address is NHS England, PO Box 16738, Redditch, B97 9PT. You can also visit the website www.england.nhs.uk for more information.
If patients are not satisfied with the way their complaint has been dealt with by the provider or commissioner, they can contact the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman (PHSO)
www.ombudsman.org on 0345 015 4033 or Independent professional complaints advocacy. This service is available, free of charge, to the complainant.
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.
Did Not Attend Policy
‘Did Not Attend’ (DNA) appointments are when the patient does not turn up for the appointment and does not contact the surgery in advance to cancel/change appointment. The affect of these are:
- An increase in the waiting time for appointments
- Frustration for both staff and patients
- A waste of resources
- A potential risk to the health of the patient
If a patient fails to attend a pre-booked appointment on more than one occasion in the last 12 months, an informal warning letter will be sent to the patient. If non- attendance continues a formal warning letter will then be sent to the patient advising them that a further occurrence could risk removal from the Practice.
If the patient fails to attend another appointment, the matter will be discussed at a Practice Meeting and a majority agreement will be reached as to whether the patient will be removed from the Practice list. In which case, a formal warning letter will be issued.
Warning letters are valid for a period of 12 months. Removal based on warnings greater than 12 months old will be invalid – in this case a further formal warning and period of grace will be required.
Where a patient with a chronic condition or is otherwise deemed to be “at risk” fails to attend a screening or a recall appointment there may be an implied duty on the practice to follow-up the reason for non-attendance to ensure that the patient’s health is not at risk.
The responsible clinician (doctor or the nurse holding the clinic) will be responsible for initiating action to contact the patient by telephone to determine the reason for the failure to attend, and where possible re-arrange the appointment.
Where a new appointment is arranged, this is to be followed up with a letter of confirmation, and, the day prior to the new appointment date, a further telephone call to the patient is to be made to check that they will attend.
The clinician will have overall responsibility for the individual patient follow-up and attendance, although the administration aspects may be delegated.
The DNA must be coded onto the clinical system at each non-attendance.
Matching Green SUrgery is committed to providing a safe, comfortable environment where patients and staff can be confident that best practice is being followed at all times and the safety of everyone is of paramount importance.
This Chaperone Policy adheres to local and national guidance and policy
‘NCGST Guidance on the role and effective use of chaperones in Primary and Community Care settings’.
All patients are entitled to have a chaperone present for any consultation, examination or procedure where they consider one is required. The chaperone may be a family member or friend, but on occasions a formal chaperone may be preferred.
Patients are advised to ask for a chaperone if required, at the time of booking an appointment, if possible, so that arrangements can be made and the appointment is not delayed in any way. The Healthcare Professional may also require a chaperone to be present for certain consultations.
All staff are aware of and have received appropriate information in relation to this Chaperone Policy.
All trained chaperones understand their role and responsibilities and are competent to perform that role.
There is no common definition of a chaperone and their role varies considerably depending on the needs of the patient, the healthcare professional and the examination being carried out.
Their role can be considered in any of the following areas:
- Emotional comfort and reassurance to patients
- Assist in examination (e.g. during IUCD insertion)
- Assist in undressing
- Act as interpreter
- Protection to the healthcare professional against allegations / attack