All health organisations must, by law, share information with each other about patients they are caring for directly, to improve the care provided. They must also use a patient's NHS number as a consistent identifier when sharing data or information about them. This was set out in the Health and Social Care (Safety and Quality) Act 2015, which aimed to reduce anxiety about data sharing. The 2013 Caldicott Review found that in some cases this anxiety meant patient information was not shared, even when sharing would have been in the best interest of the patient.
NHS Digital have produced guidance to help put these duties into practice, so that patients receive the best possible care, while their information is protected.
At our practice we use a computer system called SystmOne. This computer system is used by several different health organisations, enabling them to view records for patients who are under their care. Our patients have a choice whether these organisations (which use the same system as ours) can view their GP Health Record. Ultimately the choice is the patient's. Patients can choose to not share their records with these other health care organisations who are involved in their care if they wish. Our advice would be to share, as this will result in better and safer clinical care.
As a practice we will share records to other organisations who care for you, if you have not set any preferences with us, as we are only sharing to those health organisations who look after our patients.
More information can be found by clicking here NHS Digital Information Security
Opting Out of Research and Planning
The national data opt-out is a new service that allows patients to opt out of sharing their confidential patient information being used for research and planning.
Patients can view or change their national data opt-out choice at any time by using the online service at www.nhs.uk/your-nhs-data-matters.
To find out more visit https://digital.nhs.uk/services/national-data-opt-out-programme