Information Sharing & Access

How information about you helps us to provide better care

The way that we provide health and care services in Stockport is changing. We are working to integrate (join up) services so that we can improve the standard and quality for the people of Stockport.

In order for us to integrate services we also need to share the information we have.

As a Stockport resident, you may receive care and treatment from a number of places such as your GP practice, hospital and social care who will all hold information about you. In order for professionals to provide you with the best possible treatment and support it is important for them to have quick access to the information they need, which may be held by someone else.

This page aims to tell you how your information is kept and shared by the various organisations via the Stockport Health and Care Record and the Summary Care Record.

Stockport Health & Care Record

The Stockport Health and Care Record is an electronic record that brings together information from different parts of the NHS in Stockport. From October 2015 this record will be expanded to include information from other organisations to make this a more complete record of your care.

Everyone registered with a Stockport GP will automatically have a Stockport Health and Care Record which contains your name, address, date of birth, NHS number and relevant sections of your GP record, social care record (if you have one) and End of Life Care Portal for Anticipatory Care (EPAC) record (if you have one).

What does it mean for me?

As a patient, you can be confident that the person treating you has all the information they need quickly in order to make the best decisions about your care. For example, if you attend Stepping Hill Hospital the person treating you will have access to the information they need without having to ask you or your GP. This could also stop you having to repeat information to lots of different people.

Other benefits include:

· Safer and better care as health and care professionals can access information quickly to help them manage conditions more effectively

· Safer care as up to date information on things like medication and allergies is available when needed

· Reduces the amount of information you need to tell the person treating you

· Reduces the duplication of tests and investigations as professionals will have access to details of tests you have already had done and their results

· Quicker and safer discharge from hospital

Who can access my information?

At the moment the following groups of professionals have access to the Stockport Health and Care Record:

· GPs

· Practice Nurses

· District Nurses

· Medicines Optimisation Team

· Clinical staff at Stockport NHS Foundation Trust (Stepping Hill Hospital)

· Stockport Social Care Services

· Mastercall (the out of hours GP service)

· MacMillan Nurses

· St Ann’s Hospice (EPAC only – see section below)

· Locality Hub Professionals consisting of Multi-Disciplinary Teams

It is important to understand that these professionals will only have access to the information that they need in order to treat you effectively. The amount of information that can be viewed varies depending on the person’s job role.

The only exception is Mastercall the out of hours GP service. Your full GP record can be accessed by both your usual GP practice and also the out of hours service (with your permission). This is to improve continuity, quality and safety when your practice is closed.

How is my information kept safe?

Your information is protected under the Data Protection Act 1998. Health and care staff receive training and understand that they have a duty of confidentiality.

The records are kept on a secure database to prevent unauthorised access in line with current legislation. Your information will never be shared with anyone who is not directly involved in your care.

Also, professionals should only access this information with your permission. If they cannot ask you, for example if you are unconscious, they may look at your information but if they do this, they have to make a note on your record to say why they have done so.

Every time someone tries to access your information the system logs this so we can easily audit who is accessing your information and when. They will also have to log whether they have accessed the information with your permission.

What if I don’t want my information to be shared?

At any point, you can say ‘no’ to any professional who asks for permission to view your information.

You are also able to opt out completely of having a Stockport Health and Care Record. However, this will mean that in an emergency the professionals helping you may not have all the information they need to make the best decisions about your care. If you would like to opt out you should contact your GP practice who can arrange this for you.

Stockport End of Life Portal for Anticipatory Care (EPAC)

Palliative and End of Life Care aims to improve the quality of life of people (including carers) affected by serious and life limiting illness. It can include people with cancer or other illnesses such as heart, lung, liver or neurological conditions.

The EPAC record forms part of the Stockport Health and Care Record outlined above and therefore has the same governance controls such as information only being accessible with your consent. It allows key information about you and your wishes to be shared with those professionals involved in your care such as GPs, hospital staff, St Ann’s Hospice and MacMillan nurses. It will assist professionals in discussing and delivering the right care, in the right place, at the right time for you.

The EPAC record includes information such as:

· Demographics e.g. name, date of birth and address

· Summary of key discussions you may have had with professionals around your illness

· Your diagnosis and relevant medical history

· Medications and allergies

· Preferences and wishes about your future care

What if I don’t want my information to be shared?

You will be asked for your consent from your health or care professional before they can create, update or access your EPAC record. You can also choose the length of time your consent is valid. You are free to say ‘no’ at any time.

It is important to note that if you have opted out of having a Stockport Health and Care Record you will be unable to have an EPAC record due to them being held on the same system.

Summary Care Record

What is it?

The NHS in England introduced Summary Care Records to improve the safety and quality of patient care. Like the Stockport Health and Care Record it gives healthcare staff faster, easier access to reliable information about you to help with your treatment.

This record is not as detailed as the Stockport Health and Care Record and only contains information about the medicines you take, allergies you suffer from and any bad reactions to medicines you may have. It also includes your name, address, date of birth and NHS number to help identify you correctly.

The purpose of this is to make important information readily available anywhere that you need health treatment within England, for example if you are staying away from Stockport on holiday. The information in the Stockport Health and Care Record is only accessible by staff based within the Stockport area.

What does it mean for me?

Having a Summary Care Record gives authorised healthcare staff a quicker way to get important information about you, and can reduce the risk of medical errors occurring when caring for you in an emergency or out-of-hours, when your GP practice is closed. Only healthcare staff involved in supporting or providing your care can see your Summary Care Record. Healthcare staff will ask your permission every time they need to look at your Summary Care Record. If they cannot ask you, for example if you are unconscious, they may look at your Summary Care Record, but if they do this, they will make a note on your record to say why they have done so.

What if I don’t want my information to be shared?

At any point, you can say ‘no’ to any professional who asks for permission to view your information.

You are also able to opt out completely of having a Summary Care Record. However, this will mean that in an emergency the professionals helping you may not have all the information they need to make the best decisions about your care. If you choose not to have a Summary Care Record then you should contact your GP practice who can arrange this for you.

More information on the Summary Care Record can be found at http://systems.hscic.gov.uk/scr/patients

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