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Noticeboard

WE ARE CURRENTLY NOT ACCEPTING NEW PATIENTS

East Grinstead is undergoing a significant rise in the number of people living in the area and we are finding it difficult to sustain a workload that is safe and manageable. It is with regret that as a result we are no longer able to register new patients and have notified NHS England of this decision.

In the meantime, if you need to register with a GP surgery in East Grinstead, please contact NHS England on 01293 729298, so that they can arrange for you to be allocated to a local GP surgery.

 

 

Dear Patient,

 

 

As part of our care for you we are reviewing repeat prescriptions.

 

Some prescription items may have changed to an unbranded (or to the NHS more cost-effective branded) version of exactly the same drug by a different name.

 

Your dose will remain exactly the same and you should not experience any difference in effect or any adverse effects.

 

You may notice a change in the appearance of your new medicine, which does not affect the action of the drug in any way.

 

Your medication records will be changed automatically, so please order your next prescription in the usual way. It will help the NHS to save money, if you could use up any remaining medication first and then continue with the new one.

 

Your Healthcare Team

Care Data

your care dataInformation about you and the care you receive is shared, in a secure system, by healthcare staff to support your treatment and care.

It is important that we, the NHS, can use this information to plan and improve services for all patients. We would like to link information from all the different places where you receive care, such as your GP, hospital and community service, to help us provide a full picture. This will allow us to compare the care you received in one area against the care you received in another, so we can see what has worked best.

Information such as your postcode and NHS number, but not your name, will be used to link your records in a secure system, so your identity is protected. Information which does not reveal your identity can then be used by others, such as researchers and those planning health services, to make sure we provide the best care possible for everyone.

You have a choice. If you are happy for your information to be used in this way you do not have to do anything. If you have any concerns or wish to prevent this from happening, please speak to practice staff or download the opt out form below, complete it and return it to the practice

We need to make sure that you know this is happening and the choices you have.

doc How information about you helps us to provide better care

doc Care Data - Frequently Asked Questions

doc Opt Out Form - Download, complete and return to the practice

 

Return your completed form to the surgery by post or pop it into reception on your next visit.

You can find out more on the NHS England Care Data website

 

Data Sharing

Judges Close Surgery and its Doctors and Staff, working as part of the NHS, need and want to share data in various ways but we also want to protect your confidential and personal information.  Data about health can be used for various reasons, both internally within the practice, and externally with other services.

In the last few years there have been a number of local and national schemes proposed and implemented where data will be compulsorily extracted from GP computer systems and sent elsewhere. Further data extractions for new purposes are due to occur soon. Some of these data extractions are to help the patient if they are seen elsewhere in the country. Some are purely for analysis of health care to improve the NHS services.

For many of these schemes, GP practices have a legal obligation to allow their data to be extracted. The only power we have as the data controllers of your Medical Record is to try to ensure that you are aware of where your medical records may be sent and why. Patients however can, in some cases, prohibit their data from being extracted. This document tries to explain the main purposes of data extraction and how you can selectively prohibit this if you wish.

 

The Summary Care Record (SCR) (Identifiable data)

This is a national database that is intended to provide basic health information to all providers who need it.  This is currently being rolled out across the country.  It is intended that your demographics (personal details such as name, dob, address etc) as well as basic medical information about you, (initially just drugs and allergies) would be stored and made accessible to anyone needing it within the NHS (for example if you were seen in a Casualty department in another area of the country.  You can ask to “opt out” of the SCR if you wish by asking the practice to amend your records. See below for how to do this.

 

Local Care Records   (Identifiable data)          

Many areas of the country and Clinical Commissioning groups (CCG’s) are now starting to establish their own local databases of patient information, to try to improve communication between different services (such as Health Service and Social Services) and to help plan local care. They bring together information held on computers in Health care and in Social care. They are designed to allow Health and Social care staff faster access to relevant patient information. Anyone accessing a patient’s records will have their details recorded so it’s possible to see who has opened each record.  

Key benefits of these schemes are hoped to be things such as: 

  1. Safeguarding Children : poor information sharing has been highlighted as significant risk in recent cases. 
  2. Frail Elderly : sharing information when someone is vulnerable.
  3. Urgent care :  if someone is not able to give vital information in a critical situation.

 

You can opt out of having your medical records extracted and uploaded to any such local database and information on how to do this is shown below.

 

  Care.data (Rolling out nationally from Spring 2014)

 

In 2013 the government proposed to extract large sections of data from GP practices to form a national database from which they intend to analyse health needs across the country but also down to local assessments.  This has not yet been implemented and we need to wait to see the details.  However, if it is implemented, GP’s will not have a choice about this extraction and it will be universal, to help support NHS planning.  After serious expressions of concern from the Medical profession, the Government has finally agreed to a national mail shot in an attempt to ensure that you have a chance to block the initial extraction of your personal data from your GP records. This will be a one off chance and you can expect a leaflet through your door soon. Patients cannot object to the extraction of data if it is anonomysed, when it’s not possible to identify the person involved. However, the Care.Data project will be extracting identifiable data. This will be sent, initially, to a large organisation called the HSCIC (Health and Social Care Information Centre) where it will be held securely. This data will then, it is claimed, be anonomysed so that it would not be possible to work out whose data was whose. It could then be passed on, or sold on, to other agencies, including commercial organisations.

 

The official guide to the care data project is available here: http://www.england.nhs.uk/ourwork/tsd/care-data/

 

The Independent Newspaper’s summary of the Care.data scheme is available here: http://tinyurl.com/p548me6

 

An alternative view, written by a knowledgeable GP, is available here: http://care-data.info/

 

Although we at Judges Close Surgery cannot block the upload of our patient data, you can block your own data being uploaded, if you wish. If you wish to do so, read how to do so at the end of this leaflet.    

 

Other data held on you in other databases:

There are several other agencies, including parts of the NHS, that will hold data on you, for example, local A & E departments, local hospitals, Mental Health trusts etc. These various agencies will also be sending “patient identifiable” data to the HSCIC. Although you cannot stop these agencies from sending data on you to the HSCIC, you can prohibit its onward transmission to other agencies for “secondary use”. This is done by asking us to add a specific code to your GP record. (When the HSCIC interrogate your GP record to check permission to extract your data, it will then “see” this code - whether or not you have also had the code added to prohibit extraction for “care-data” purposes). See below for details.

 

Section 251:

Section 251 of the NHS Act 2006 allows the Secretary of State for Health to make regulations to ignore the usual requirement for Medical records to remain confidential but only for defined medical purposes.

Section 251 came about because it was recognised that there were essential activities of the NHS, and important medical research, that required the use of identifiable patient information – but, because patient consent had not been obtained to use people’s personal and confidential information for these other purposes, there was no secure basis in law for these uses. So Section 251 was established to enable disclosure of confidential patient information for medical purposes, where it was not possible to use anonomysed information and where seeking consent was not practical, having regard to the cost and technology available. In other words, it overrode the Data Protection Act.

 

Are there other implications of refusing these data extractions?

No.   Asking for any of these extractions to be blocked will NOT: 

  1. Have any effect on the medical care that you are entitled to receive from your GP surgery or from anywhere else within the NHS or private sector
  2. Have any effect on your GP surgery and the way that it is paid by the NHS or on the services that it provide
  3. Have any effect on the way that any hospital is paid by the NHS for treating you
  4. Have any effect on your prescriptions, vaccinations, screening procedures, investigations, monitoring of chronic conditions or referrals to specialists
  5. Prevent your GP from either referring you to a specialist under Choose and Book or managing your prescriptions via the Electronic Prescription Service.
  6. Prevent you from requesting your prescriptions online, emailing your GP or surgery, or accessing your medical records online (if available to you)
  7. Prevent your GP from sharing your data within the NHS, where appropriate, for the purposes of your direct medical care.    

  

How information about you helps us to provide better care

Information about you and the care you receive is shared, in a secure system, by healthcare staff to support your treatment and care.

It is important that we, the NHS, can use this information to plan and improve services for all patients. We would like to link information from all the different places where you receive care, such as your GP, hospital and community service, to help us provide a full picture. This will allow us to compare the care you received in one area against the care you received in another, so we can see what has worked best.

Information such as your postcode and NHS number, but not your name, will be used to link your records in a secure system, so your identity is protected. Information which does not reveal your identity can then be used by others, such as researchers and those planning health services, to make sure we provide the best care possible for everyone.

How your information is used and shared is controlled by law and strict rules are in place to protect your privacy. We need to make sure that you know this is happening and the choices you have.

 

Benefits of sharing information

Sharing information can help improve understanding, locally and nationally, of the most important health needs and the quality of the treatment and care provided by local health services. It may also help researchers by supporting studies that identify patterns in diseases, responses to different treatments and potential solutions.

Information will also help to:

  1. Find more effective ways of preventing, treating and managing illnesses;
  2. Guide local decisions about changes that are needed to respond to the needs of local patients;
  3. Support public health by anticipating risks of particular diseases and conditions, and help us to take   action to prevent problems;
  4. Improve the public’s understanding of the outcomes of care, giving them confidence in health and care   services; and
  5. Guide decisions about how to manage NHS resources fairly so that they can best support the treatment   and management of illness for the benefit of patients.

 

What will we do with the information?

We will only use the minimum amount of information we need to help us improve patient care and the services we provide.

We have developed a thorough process that must be followed before any information can be shared. We sometimes release information to approved researchers, if this is allowed under the strict rules in place to protect your privacy. We are very careful with the information and we follow strict rules about how it is stored and used.

We will make sure that the way we use information is in line with the law, national guidance and best practice. Reports that we publish will never identify a particular person.

 

Do I have a choice?

Yes. You have the right to prevent confidential information about you from being shared or used for any purpose other than providing your care, except in special circumstances. If you do not want information that identifies you to be shared outside your GP practice, ask your practice to make a note of this in your medical record. This will prevent your confidential information being used other than where necessary by law, (for example, if there is a public health emergency).

You will also be able to restrict the use of information held by other places you receive care, such as hospitals and community services. You should let your GP know if you want to restrict the use of this information.

Your choice will not affect the care you receive.

 

Do I need to do anything?

If you are happy for your information to be shared you do not need to do anything. There is no form to fill in and nothing to sign and you can change your mind at any time.

If you have concerns or are not happy for your information to be shared, speak to your GP practice.

 

Where can I get more information?

For more information, including a list of frequently asked questions (FAQs), please go to the website at www.nhs.uk/caredata.

You can also get further information from the website at www.hscic.gov.uk.

Or you can speak to staff at your GP practice.

 

 

Disclaimer:

All information contained in this document was correct at the time if writing.  But guidance given to GP Practices and requirements of GP’s to engage with future data extractions and sharing may be subject to change, as stipulated by NHS England or other statutory bodies.

 



 
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