Dr Norris, Gorecka, Burgess & Paterson
GOSPORT MEDICAL CENTRE
- Every patient, and the parents/guardians of those under the age of 16, has to be secure in the knowledge that any medical and personal information held within Practice records, be they manual or on the computer, will remain within the surgery and will not be divulged to any other person. They can, in fact, expect such records to be between themselves and their doctor only. However, this is unworkable and so the Partners allow all Practice staff to have access to patient’s records.
- Legally, the Partners are liable for the integrity of the staff they employ and so, to be certain that patient confidentiality is maintained, every member of staff is required to sign an undertaking not to divulge patient information. A breach of confidentiality may be treated as gross misconduct on the part of the staff member and is grounds for instant dismissal.
- While the need for access to patient’s records is recognised, it is Practice policy that such access should be restricted to the minimum necessary for efficient administration of records. Members of staff must not abuse the privilege of access by reading information that is not relevant to their job. Information obtained must not be discussed between members of staff unless absolutely necessary such information must not be passed where it can be overheard by persons who are not employed by the Practice.
Staff and Families
- Staff are not permitted to be registered as patients of the Practice, family members may be registered.
1. Patients’ notes are to remain in the lockable storage unit within the Main Office except when required elsewhere within the Surgery. THEY ARE NEVER TO BE REMOVED FROM THE SURGERY, except when required by one of the Doctors.
2. Care must be exercised when moving notes about the building that parts of the records do not become detached from the rest of the notes.
3. Notes must not be left unattended where non staff members may see or gain access to them.
4. Staff must not discuss patient information between themselves unless necessary for their job.
- Staff updating a patient’s record must not seek other information about the patient which is not relevant to the job they are doing.
- When a member of staff needs to leave their computer unattended, they must remove their Smartcard as this will force the computer to lock.
- Particular care must be exercised when information about a patient is being passed by telephone. Where use of these telephones is unavoidable, the patients name should not be mentioned if at all possible.
- Information about patients may be passed by telephone to the following, but only where identity has been positively established:
a. One of the Practice Doctors
b. Other Healthcare Professionals (on a need to know basis)
c. The patient themselves
d. The parent/guardian of a child under 16 years of age, unless the GP decides otherwise.
- It is recognised that a degree of discretion must be exercised when answering telephone enquiries. The golden rule is: IF IN DOUBT DO NOT GIVE ANY INFORMATION, offer to call back using an independently determined telephone number.