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.
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.
We strive to provide an excellent service for our patients at all times. However we recognise that there maybe occasions when your expectations are not realised. The Practice aims to ensure that its complaints procedure is properly and effectively implemented and that patients feel confident that their complaints and worries are listened to and acted upon promptly and fairly.
Any comments made by the patients are welcomed and are looked upon as an opportunity to learn, adapt, improve and provide better services. If you wish to make a comment or suggestion about the services provided you can write or discuss these with Mr Sweeney the Practice Manager. We hope that nothing occurs while you or your family are in our care that makes you concerned; however should you feel you have reason to be unhappy, we will deal with it in a proper manner.
If it is not possible to let us know at the time of the problem that has arisen, then please let us have details of your complaint within 6 months of the incident that has caused the problem or within 6 months of discovering that you have a problem, provided it is within 12 months of the incident.
Complaints should be addressed to the Margaret Smyth, Practice Manager. Alternatively you may ask for an interview with Margaret.
We shall acknowledge receipt of your complaint within 3 working days and aim to have looked into your complaint within 20 working days. We shall then be in a position to give you an explanation, or offer a meeting with those involved.
In investigating your complaint we shall aim to:
Find out what happened and what went wrong;
Enable you to discuss the problem with those concerned, if you would like this;
Ensure you receive an apology, where this is appropriate;
Identify what we can do to ensure this problem does not happen again.
'Complaints on Behalf of Someone
The Practice keeps strictly to the rules of patient confidentiality. If you wish to complain on behalf of someone else, we have to know that you have permission to do so. Therefore we require a letter signed by the person concerned unless they are incapable (because of illness) of providing this or if is a child.
Attatched Staff or Other Services
We are pleased to accept your comments about Health Board staff attached to the Practice or other NHS services. However because we are not directly responsible for these services, then it will be necessary to forward your comments to the appropriate body.
The Practice believes that, wherever possible, complaints are best dealt with on a local level between the complainant and the Practice. If however you remain dissatisfied at the outcome at local level, you may ask that the Ombudsman review your case.
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.