Privacy Notice for Patients
What is a Privacy Notice?
A Privacy Notice is an explanation of what information SomDoc Walk in Clinic collects on patients, and how it is used. Being transparent and providing clear information to patients about how we use their personal data is an essential requirement of the GDPR & Data Protection Act 2018.
Under the DPA, the first principle is to process personal data in a fair and lawful manner, and applies to everything that is done with patient’s personal information. In private practice, this means that SomDoc Walk in Clinic must.
• Have legitimate reasons for the use or collection of personal data
• Not use the data in a way that may cause adverse effects on the individuals (e.g. improper sharing of their information with 3rd parties)
• Be transparent about how the data will be used, and give appropriate privacy notices when collecting their personal data
• Handle personal data only as reasonably expected to do so
• Make no unlawful use of the collected data
Personal data must be processed in a fair manner – the DPA says that information should be treated as being obtained fairly if a person who is legally authorised or required to provide it provides it. Fair Processing means that SomDoc Walk in Clinic has to be clear and open with people about how their information is used.
Providing a ‘Privacy Notice’ is a way of stating SomDoc Walk in Clinic commitment to being transparent and is a part of fair processing, however you also need to consider the effects of processing on the individuals and patients concerned.
• What information are we collecting?
• Who collects the data?
• How is it collected?
• Why do we collect it?
• How will we use the data?
• Who will we share it with?
• What is the effect on the individuals?
• If we use it as intended, will it cause individuals to object or complain?
Conducting a Privacy Impact Assessment is an effective way of assessing whether you can safely collect or use patient data according to the DPA and Information Governance requirements.
Under the Data Protection Act 2018, the data controller is the person or SomDoc Walk in Clinic that will decide the purpose and the manner in which any personal data will be processed – they have overall control of the data they collect, and decide how and why it will be processed.
SomDoc Walk in Clinic is a data controller for the patient information it collects, and should already have data processing arrangements with third parties (e.g. IT systems providers) to ensure they do not use or access data unlawfully; the data controllers will have ultimate responsibility for SomDoc Walk in Clinic compliance with the DPA.
This is an acceptable way of assessing patients’ needs and prevent ill health, however it is also regarded as a disclosure of personal information, and patients have the option to opt out of any data collection at SomDoc Walk in Clinic and needs to be made clear to them.
Access to Personal Information
The DPA gives patients the right to view any information held about them – the ‘Right of Subject Access’. Explain the process and who to contact.
SOMDOC WALK IN CLINIC PRIVACY NOTICE
How we use your information
This privacy notice explains why we as SomDoc Walk in Clinic collect information about our patients and how we use that information.
SomDoc Walk in Clinic manages patient information in accordance with existing laws and with guidance from private practices that govern the provision of healthcare in England such as the Department of Health and the General Medical Council.
We are committed to protecting your privacy and will only use information collected lawfully in accordance with:
• Data Protection Act 2018
• Human Rights Act 1998
• Common Law Duty of Confidentiality
• Health and Social Care Act 2012
As data controllers, clinicians have fair processing responsibilities under the GDPR & Data Protection Act 2018. In SomDoc Walk in Clinic this means ensuring that your personal confidential data (PCD) is handled clearly and transparently, and in a reasonably expected way.
The Health and Social Care Act 2012 changed the way that personal confidential data is processed, therefore it is important that our patients are aware of and understand these changes, and that you have an opportunity to object and know how to do so.
The health care professionals who provide you with care maintain records about your health and any treatment or care you have received. These records help to provide you with the best possible healthcare.
Health records may be processed electronically, on paper or a mixture of both; a combination of working private practices and technology are used to ensure that your information is kept confidential and secure. Records held by this private practice may include the following information:
• Details about you, such as address and next of kin
• Any contact SomDoc Walk in Clinic has had with you
• Notes and reports about your health
• Details about treatment and care received
• Results of investigations, such as laboratory tests, x-rays, etc.
• Relevant information from other health professionals, relatives or those who care for you
SomDoc Walk in Clinic collects and holds data for the sole purpose of providing healthcare services to our patients and we will ensure that the information is kept confidential. However, we can disclose personal information if:
a) It is required by law
b) You provide consent – either implicitly or for the sake of their own care, or explicitly for other purposes
c) It is justified to be in the public interest
Some of this information will be held centrally and used for statistical purposes. Where we hold data centrally, we take strict and secure measures to ensure that individual patients cannot be identified.
Information may be used for clinical audit purposes to monitor the quality of service provided, and may be held centrally and used for statistical purposes. Where we do this we ensure that patient records cannot be identified.
Sometimes your information may be requested to be used for clinical research purposes – SomDoc Walk-in Clinic will always endeavor to gain your consent before releasing the information.
Improvements in information technology are also making it possible for us to share data with other healthcare providers with the objective of providing you with better care.
Patients can choose to withdraw their consent to their data being used in this way. When SomDoc Walk-in Clinic is about to participate in any new data-sharing scheme we will make patients aware by displaying prominent notices in SomDoc Walk in Clinic and on our website at least four weeks before the scheme is due to start. We will also explain clearly what you have to do to ‘opt-out’ of each new scheme.
A patient can object to their personal information being shared with other health care providers but if this limits the treatment that you can receive then the doctor will explain this to you at the time.
SomDoc Walk in Clinic Website
Should you have any concerns about how your information is managed or wish to opt out of any data collection at SomDoc Walk in Clinic please contact SomDoc Walk in Clinic or your healthcare professional to discuss how the disclosure of your personal information can be limited.
Patients have the right to change their minds and reverse a previous decision.
Please contact SomDoc Walk in Clinic if you change your mind regarding any previous choice.
How do we maintain the confidentiality of your records?
We are committed to protecting your privacy and will only use information collected lawfully in accordance with the GDPR & Data Protection Act 2018 (which is overseen by the Information Commissioner’s Office), Human Rights Act, the Common Law Duty of Confidentiality.
All of our staff, contractors and committee members receive appropriate and regular training to ensure they are aware of their personal responsibilities and have legal and contractual obligations to uphold confidentiality, enforceable through disciplinary procedures. Only a limited number of authorised staff have access to personal information where it is appropriate to their role and is strictly on a need-to-know basis.
We maintain our duty of confidentiality to you at all times. We will only ever use or pass on information about you if others involved in your care have a genuine need for it. We will not disclose your information to any third party without your permission unless there are exceptional circumstances (i.e. life or death situations), or where the law requires information to be passed on.
Who are our partner clinical organisations?
We may also have to share your information, subject to strict agreements on how it will be used, with the following organisations:
• NHS Trusts
• Specialist Trusts
• Independent Contractors such as dentists, opticians, pharmacists
• Other Private Sector Providers
• Voluntary Sector Providers
• Ambulance Trusts
• Social Care Services
• Local Authorities
• Education Services
• Fire and Rescue Services
• Other ‘data processors’
Access to personal information
You have a right under the GDPR & Data Protection Act 2018 to access/view information SomDoc Walk in Clinic holds about you, and to have it amended or removed should it be inaccurate. This is known as ‘the right of subject access’. If we do hold information about you we will:
• give you a description of it
• tell you why we are holding it
• tell you who it could be disclosed to
• let you have a copy of the information in an intelligible form
If you would like to make a ‘subject access request’, please contact the Practice Manager in writing. There may be a charge for this service. Any changes to this notice will be published on our website and on SomDoc Walk-in Clinic notice board.
SomDoc Walk-in Clinic is registered as a data controller under the GDPR & Data Protection Act 2018.
Change of Details
It is important that you tell the person treating you if any of your details such as your name or address have changed or if any of your details such as date of birth is incorrect in order for this to be amended. You have a responsibility to inform us of any changes so our records are accurate and up to date for you.
The GDPR & Data Protection Act 2018 requires private practices to register a notification with the Information Commissioner to describe the purposes for which they process personal and sensitive information. This information is publicly available on the Information Commissioners Office website www.ico.org.uk. SomDoc Walk-in Clinic is registered with the Information Commissioners Office (ICO).