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How we protect your personal information

Privacy (Fair Processing) Notice

Everyone working in the NHS has a legal duty to maintain the highest level of confidentiality about patient information.

Why do we collect information about you?

The Royal Bournemouth and Christchurch Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust keeps records about the health care and treatment that you receive as one of our patients. This helps to ensure that you receive the best possible care from us.

It helps you because:

  • Accurate and up-to-date information assists us in providing you with the right care
  • Full information is readily available if you see another doctor or are referred to a specialist or another part of the NHS

It helps the NHS to:

  • Prepare statistics on NHS performance
  • Audit NHS Services
  • Monitor how we spend public money
  • Plan and manage the health service
  • Teach and train healthcare professionals
  • Conduct health research and development

Data Protection Act 1998

The Data Protection Act 1998 governs the processing of personal data held on computer systems and in other formats, which the Trust must follow.

Full details of all the purposes to which information may be put are listed at the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) website (http://www.ico.gov.uk). The Trust is registered with the ICO as a data controller. The Trust's registration number is Z4787705.

What information do we record?

We record the information you give us about you and your health in order to provide your care and treatment. Every care is taken to keep information about you secure and confidential.

The information includes administrative details such as:

  • names and addresses
  • date of birth
  • GP
  • next of kin

and details about your care such as:

  • when and where appointments with us take place
  • the medical condition for which you were referred to us
  • when your treatment or care was completed or when you were referred on to someone else
  • clinical details about diagnostic tests including scans, images and traces
  • other information related to your care and treatment.

What information do you share about me?

We know that good communication with other healthcare professionals involved with your care is beneficial for you. This means that if another healthcare professional or service is involved in your care, it might be appropriate for us to share information with them in order that you can receive the required care.

The Trust shares a joint local care record with Poole Hospital NHS Foundation Trust - this means that healthcare professionals at both hospitals can view the records of treatment that you receive at either site. This enables appropriate care to be delivered as patients move between the two Trusts.

There may be occasions when we need to share information with other organisations outside of the NHS (such as social services etc.). Sometimes the law requires that we must disclose or report certain information without needing to seek your consent (such as for the investigation of serious crime, child abuse or infectious diseases that may endanger the safety of others), but that is only done after formal authority by the Courts or by a qualified health professional. Unless there are exceptional circumstances such as these, we will not disclose your information to third parties without your permission.

After your treatment we usually write to your GP (family doctor) or whoever referred you to us. If you would like a copy of this correspondence then please ask.

Confidential information is only shared on a strict "need to know" basis. Our staff only have access to information that is necessary for them to complete their job. Staff access to confidential information is monitored by the Trust to ensure your confidentiality is maintained.

You have the right to request that your confidential information is not used beyond your own care and treatment by refusing or withdrawing your consent to information sharing at any time.

If you choose to prohibit your information from being disclosed to other health professionals involved in providing care, it might mean that the care that can be provided is limited and, in extremely rare circumstances, that it is not possible to offer certain treatment options.

In order to manage and plan services within the NHS we may need to share some of the information held about you and your care, in an anonymous format that cannot identify you. Anonymous information is not used to make any decisions about the treatment or care that you receive directly from the service caring for you.

Clinical Audit, Research and Teaching

The Trust works hard to ensure that the care you receive is of the highest quality. We encourage healthcare professionals working within the Trust to periodically review the records of patients to examine their practice and results against agreed explicit standards. This enables staff to continually improve their practice and ensure that we are providing good and best practice care.

These reviews are carried out under the approval of the Trust's Medical Director, and no personal details are released as a result of this work unless you have given your consent for this.

While always preserving confidentiality, your records can also help us with teaching, training and research. Any reports or papers resulting from this work will not identify named individuals or contain any information that could lead to you being identified.

Can I have a copy of my records?

Yes - you have the right to know what information is held about you and you can apply to access your clinical records by writing to the Health Records Department. There is a standard charge for this service.

To make a request, please write to:

Subject Access Requests
Health Records Manager
The Royal Bournemouth Hospital
Castle Lane East
Bournemouth
BH7 7DW

For more information you can download the personal information leaflet here.

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