There are several different ways in which we share your information with other healthcare professionals
The Summary Care Record (SCR)
This is a national sharing agreement whereby healthcare staff involved in your care can access information regarding your medication and any allergies. Unless you are unconscious you will always be asked for your consent to access this information.
Local Datasharing Agreements
GPs in the North Mersey area are working with local NHS care providers to implement a scheme allowing doctors and nurses in various care settings to view a limited amount of information held on GP practice computer systems. This could include medication lists, important allergies and major illnesses. Only healthcare workers actively involved in your care can see your medical record summary and only for a limited time. For example local hospitals, district nurses and local community services and you will be asked for consent at every consultation.
Health and Social Care Information Centre (HSCIC)
Information about you and the care you receive is shared, in a secure system, to plan and improve services for all patients. They will link information from all the different places where you receive care, such as your GP, hospital and community service, to help provide a full picture. This will allow them to compare the care you received in one area against the care you received in another, so they 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.
As with all new systems there are pros and cons to think about. When you speak to an emergency doctor you might overlook something that is important and if they have access to your medical record it might avoid mistakes or problems, although even then, you should be asked to give your consent each time a member of NHS Staff wishes to access your record, unless you are medically unable to do so.
Key benefits of these schemes are hoped to be things such as:
Safeguarding Children : poor information sharing has been highlighted as a significant risk in recent cases.
Frail Elderly : sharing information when someone is vulnerable.
Urgent care : if someone is not able to give vital information in a critical situation.
On the other hand, you may have strong views about sharing your personal information and wish to keep your information at the level of this practice. Connecting for Health (CfH), the government agency responsible for the Summary Care Record have agreed with doctors' leaders that new patients registering with this practice should be able to decide whether or not their information is uploaded to the Central NHS Computer System.
For existing patients it is different in that it is assumed that you want your record uploaded to the Central NHS Computer System unless you actively opt out.