Data Protection (GDPR)
How we use your information at Tamar Valley Health
- We collect and hold data about you for the purpose of providing safe and effective healthcare
- Your information may be shared with our partner organisations to audit services and help provide you with better care
- Information sharing is subject to strict agreements on how it is used
- We will only share your information outside of our partner organisations with your consent*
- If you are happy with how we use your information you do not need to do anything
- If you do not want your information to be used for any purpose beyond providing your care please let us know so we can code your record appropriately
- You can object to sharing information with other health care providers but if this limits your treatment options we will tell you
- Our guiding principle is that we are holding your information in the strictest confidence
- For more information about who are our partner organisations and how your data is used please see the privacy notice on our website or ask at reception.
*Unless the health & safety of others is at risk, the law requires it or it is required to carry out a statutory function
How the NHS and care services use your information
Tamar Valley Health is one of many organisations working in the health and care system to improve care for patients and the public
Whenever you use a health or care service, such as attending Accident & Emergency or using Community Care services, important information about you is collected in a patient record for that service. Collecting this information helps to ensure you get the best possible care and treatment.
The information collected about you when you use these services can also be used and provided to other organisations for purposes beyond your individual care, for instance to help with:
- improving the quality and standards of care provided
- research into the development of new treatments
- preventing illness and diseases
- monitoring safety
- planning services
This may only take place when there is a clear legal basis to use this information. All these uses help to provide better health and care for you, your family and future generations. Confidential patient information about your health and care is only used like this where allowed by law.
Most of the time, anonymised data is used for research and planning so that you cannot be identified in which case your confidential patient information isn’t needed.
You have a choice about whether you want your confidential patient information to be used in this way. If you are happy with this use of information you do not need to do anything. If you do choose to opt out your confidential patient information will still be used to support your individual care.
To find out more or to register your choice to opt out, please visit www.nhs.uk/your-nhs-data-matters. On this web page you will:
- See what is meant by confidential patient information
- Find examples of when confidential patient information is used for individual care and examples of when it is used for purposes beyond individual care
- Find out more about the benefits of sharing data
- Understand more about who uses the data
- Find out how your data is protected
- Be able to access the system to view, set or change your opt-out setting
- Find the contact telephone number if you want to know any more or to set/change your opt-out by phone
- See the situations where the opt-out will not apply
You can also find out more about how patient information is used at: www.hra.nhs.uk/information-about-patients
(which covers health and care research) and
(which covers how and why patient information is used, the safeguards and how decisions are made)
You can change your mind about your choice at any time.
Data being used or shared for purposes beyond individual care does not include your data being shared with insurance companies or used for marketing purposes and data would only be used in this way with your specific agreement.
Health and care organisations have until 2020 to put systems and processes in place so they can be compliant with the national data opt-out and apply your choice to any confidential patient information they use or share for purposes beyond your individual care. Our organisation is compliant with the national data opt-out policy.
How we use your personal information
This fair processing notice explains why the GP practice collects information about you and how that information may be used.
The health care professionals who provide you with care maintain records about your health and any treatment or care you have received previously (e.g. NHS Trust, GP Surgery, Walk-in clinic, etc.). These records help to provide you with the best possible healthcare.
NHS health records may be electronic, on paper or a mixture of both, and we use a combination of working practices and technology to ensure that your information is kept confidential and secure. Records which this GP practice holds about you may include the following information:
- Details about you, such as your address, carer, legal representative, emergency contact details
- Any contact the surgery has had with you, such as appointments, clinic visits, emergency appointments, etc.
- Notes and reports about your health
- Results of investigations such as laboratory tests, x-rays, etc.
- Relevant information from other health professionals, relatives or those who care for you
To ensure you receive the best possible care, your records are used to facilitate the care you receive. Information held about you may be used to help protect the health of the public and to help us manage the NHS. Information may be used within the GP practice for clinical audit to monitor the quality of the service provided.
Some of this information will be held centrally and used for statistical purposes. Where we do this, we take strict measures to ensure that individual patients cannot be identified. Sometimes your information may be requested to be used for research purposes. Tamar Valley Health is an approved ‘Research Ready’ practice but we will always gain your consent before releasing the information for this purpose.
Risk stratification data tools are increasingly being used in the NHS to help determine a person’s risk of suffering a particular condition, preventing an unplanned or (re)admission and identifying a need for preventative intervention. Information about you is collected from a number of sources including NHS Trusts and from this GP practice. A risk score is then arrived at through an analysis of your de-identified information using services contracted by NHS Kernow, and is only provided back to your GP as data controller in an identifiable form. Risk stratification enables your GP to focus on preventing ill health and not just the treatment of sickness. If necessary your GP may be able to offer you additional services. Please note that you have the right to opt out of your data being used in this way.
The Practice may conduct Medicines Management Reviews of medications prescribed to its patients. This service performs a review of prescribed medications to ensure patients receive the most appropriate, up to date and cost effective treatments. This service is provided to practices within Kernow Clinical Commissioning Group.
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:
- Data Protection Act 2018
- Human Rights Act 1998
- Common Law Duty of Confidentiality
- Health and Social Care Act 2012
- NHS Codes of Confidentiality, Information Security and Records Management
- Information: to Share or Not to Share review
Every member of staff who works for an NHS organisation has a legal obligation to keep information about you confidential.
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), where the law requires information to be passed on and / or in accordance with the new information sharing principle following Dame Fiona Caldicott’s information sharing review (Information to share or not to share) where “The duty to share information can be as important as the duty to protect patient confidentiality”. This means that health and social care professionals should have the confidence to share information in the best interests of their patients within the framework set out by the Caldicott principles. They should be supported by the policies of their employers, regulators and professional bodies.
Who are our partner 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 / Foundation Trusts
- NHS Commissioning Support Units
- Independent Contractors such as dentists, opticians, pharmacists
- Private Sector Providers
- Voluntary Sector Providers
- Ambulance Trusts
- Clinical Commissioning Groups
- Our Primary Care Network
- Social Care Services
- Health and Social Care Information Centre (HSCIC)
- Local Authorities
- Education Services
- Fire and Rescue Services
- Police and Judicial Services
- Voluntary Sector Providers
- Private Sector Providers
- Other ‘data processors’ which you will be informed of
You will be informed who your data will be shared with and in some cases asked for explicit consent for this to happen when this is required.
We may also use external companies to process personal information, such as for archiving proposes. These companies are bound by contractual agreements to ensure information is kept confidential and secure.
Access to personal information
You have a right under the General Data Protection Regulations 2018 to request access to view or to obtain copies of what information the surgery holds about you and to have it amended should it be inaccurate. In order to request this, you need to do the following:
- Your request should be made verbally or in writing, including via email to the Practice – for information from the hospital you should write directly to them
- There is not normally a charge to have a printed copy of the information held about you (in some cases a charge may be applied)
- We are required to respond to you within 1 calendar month
- You will need to give adequate information (for example full name, address, date of birth, NHS number and details of your request) so that your identity can be verified and your records located
The National Data Opt Out
You can choose whether your confidential patient information is used for research and planning. The national data opt-out implements the opt-out model proposed by the National Data Guardian, as accepted by the Government and the Department of Health and Social Care.
Patients have a right under the NHS Constitution to request that their personal confidential data is not used beyond their direct care and the national data opt-out provides an easy and accessible way for patients to exercise this right.
You do not need to do anything if you are happy about how your confidential patient information is used. You can change your choice at any time.
National data opt-outs are not recorded at the GP practice and instead you can change your national data opt-out using the online service:
or by calling NHS Digital:
NHS Digital Contact Centre: 03003 035678
Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm (excluding bank holidays)
All health and care organisations in England are required to apply your national data opt-out by March 2020, including hospitals and GP practices.
Young adults from the age of 13 can set and change their own national data opt-out.
NHS Kernow as a data controller must take note and apply national data opt-outs whenever confidential patient information is to be shared either internally or outside of the organisation. The national data opt-out does not apply to information that is anonymised or is aggregate or count type data. For further information and support relating to national data opt out please refer to the following:
Mobile telephones and Email addresses
If you provide us with your mobile phone number or email address we may use this to send you reminders about any appointments or other health screening information being carried out. We may also use this information to advise you on new services to benefit your health that are available in the Practice. Please speak to reception if you wish to opt-out of receiving these types of communication.
All of our calls in and out of the practice are recorded and the information saved securely to a hard drive on the premises. Recordings are then deleted in line with our data retention policy
Objections / Complaints
Should you have any concerns about how your information is managed by the practice, please contact the Senior Management Team.
If you are still unhappy following a review by the GP practice, you can then complain to the Information Commissioners Office (ICO) via their website (www.ico.gov.uk).
If you are happy for your data to be extracted and used for the purposes described in this privacy notice then you do not need to do anything. If you have any concerns about how your data is shared then please contact the practice.
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Change of Details
It is important that you tell the person treating you if any of your details such as date of birth 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 Data Protection Act 2018 requires organisations to register a notification with the Information Commissioner to describe the purposes for which they process personal and sensitive information.
The information is publicly available on the Information Commissions Office website www.ico.org.uk.
The practice is registered with the Information Commissioners Office (ICO).
Who is the Data Controller?
The Data Controller responsible for keeping your information secure and confidential is:
Tamar Valley Health.
Who is the Data Protection Officer?
The Data Protection Officer for Tamar Valley Health is:
Trudy Corsellis, NHS Kernow CCG, Sedgemoor Centre, Priory Road, St Austell, PL25 5AS,
Tel: 01726 627800.
Should you have any concerns about how your information is managed by the Practice please contact the Patient Services Manager at the following address:
Miss Kelly Graham, Tamar Valley Health, Haye Road, Callington, PL177DS
If you are still unhappy following a review by the Practice you can then complain to the Information Commissioners Office (ICO). www.ico.org.uk, firstname.lastname@example.org, telephone: 03031 231113 (local rate) or 01625 545745.
For more information about complaints, please visit our Suggestions, Comments and Complaints page.
General Practice Transparency Notice for GPES Data for Pandemic Planning and Research
This practice is supporting vital coronavirus (COVID-19) planning and research by sharing your data with NHS Digital.
The health and social care system is facing significant pressures due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. Health and care information is essential to deliver care to individuals, to support health, social care and other public services and to protect public health. Information will also be vital in researching, monitoring, tracking and managing the coronavirus outbreak. In the current emergency it has become even more important to share health and care information across relevant organisations. This practice is supporting vital coronavirus planning and research by sharing your data with NHS Digital, the national safe haven for health and social care data in England.
Our Legal Basis for Sharing Data with NHS Digital
NHS Digital has been legally directed to collect and analyse patient data from all GP practices in England to support the coronavirus response for the duration of the outbreak. NHS Digital will become the controller under the General Data Protection Regulation 2016 (GDPR) of the personal data collected and analysed jointly with the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, who has directed NHS Digital to collect and analyse this data under the COVID-19 Public Health Directions 2020 (COVID-19 Direction).
All GP practices in England are legally required to share data with NHS Digital for this purpose under the Health and Social Care Act 2012 (2012 Act). More information about this requirement is contained in the data provision notice issued by NHS Digital to GP practices.
Under GDPR our legal basis for sharing this personal data with NHS Digital is Article 6(1)(c) – legal obligation. Our legal basis for sharing personal data relating to health, is Article 9(2)(g) – substantial public interest, for the purposes of NHS Digital exercising its statutory functions under the COVID-19 Direction.
The Type of Personal Data we are Sharing with NHS Digital
The data being shared with NHS Digital will include information about patients who are currently registered with a GP practice or who have a date of death on or after 1 November 2019 whose record contains coded information relevant to coronavirus planning and research. The data contains NHS Number, postcode, address, surname, forename, sex, ethnicity, date of birth and date of death for those patients. It will also include coded health data which is held in your GP record such as details of:
- diagnoses and findings
- medications and other prescribed items
- investigations, tests and results
- treatments and outcomes
- vaccinations and immunisations
How NHS Digital Will Use and Share Your Data
NHS Digital will analyse the data they collect and securely and lawfully share data with other appropriate organisations, including health and care organisations, bodies engaged in disease surveillance and research organisations for coronavirus response purposes only. These purposes include protecting public health, planning and providing health, social care and public services, identifying coronavirus trends and risks to public health, monitoring and managing the outbreak and carrying out of vital coronavirus research and clinical trials. The British Medical Association, the Royal College of General Practitioners and the National Data Guardian are all supportive of this initiative.
NHS Digital has various legal powers to share data for purposes relating to the coronavirus response. It is also required to share data in certain circumstances set out in the COVID-19 Direction and to share confidential patient information to support the response under a legal notice issued to it by the Secretary of State under the Health Service (Control of Patient Information) Regulations 2002 (COPI Regulations).
Legal notices under the COPI Regulations have also been issued to other health and social care organisations requiring those organisations to process and share confidential patient information to respond to the coronavirus outbreak. Any information used or shared during the outbreak under these legal notices or the COPI Regulations will be limited to the period of the outbreak unless there is another legal basis for organisations to continue to use the information.
Data which is shared by NHS Digital will be subject to robust rules relating to privacy, security and confidentiality and only the minimum amount of data necessary to achieve the coronavirus purpose will be shared. Organisations using your data will also need to have a clear legal basis to do so and will enter into a data sharing agreement with NHS Digital. Information about the data that NHS Digital shares, including who with and for what purpose will be published in the NHS Digital data release register.
For more information about how NHS Digital will use your data please see the NHS Digital Transparency Notice for GP Data for Pandemic Planning and Research (COVID-19).
National Data Opt-Out
The application of the National Data Opt-Out to information shared by NHS Digital will be considered on a case by case basis and may or may not apply depending on the specific purposes for which the data is to be used. This is because during this period of emergency, the National Data Opt-Out will not generally apply where data is used to support the coronavirus outbreak, due to the public interest and legal requirements to share information.
Your rights over your personal data
To read more about the health and care information NHS Digital collects, its legal basis for collecting this information and what choices and rights you have in relation to the processing by NHS Digital of your personal data, see:
- the NHS Digital GPES Data for Pandemic Planning and Research (COVID-19) Transparency Notice
- the NHS Digital Coronavirus (COVID-19) Response Transparency Notice
- the NHS Digital General Transparency Notice
- how NHS Digital looks after your health and care information
Childrens Privacy Information Leaflet
For a child friendly version of the privacy information, please read our Privacy Information Leaflet for Children.
Medical Records Request
To make a request for copies of medical records please complete our online Medical Report Request form.