Access to Health Records
What is a Health Record
The team of health professionals caring for you keeps records about your health and any treatment and care you receive from the NHS. These records help to make sure you receive the best possible care and may be in an electronic or paper format.
This is a written account of information about the individual in relation to contact and care delivery by the Trust and may include…
- Basic details about you, such as address and next of kin.
- Details of your ongoing care
- Information about past hospital appointments and admissions
- Results of investigations
You are entitled to access your health records under the provisions of the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) and Data Protection Bill 2018. This is known as a Subject Access Request (SAR). Unless the request is complicated or involves a large volume of information copies will be provided free of charge.
SARs are managed in accordance with the Trust Access to Records Policy. Your information will be reviewed first by a healthcare professional to ensure that what we send you will not cause upset or distress to your wellbeing. We will also check that the information we send you does not contain information you are not entitled to see.
Subject Access Requests can be made as follows
- On an informal basis, as part of the care process we can go through your record with you (by you requesting to view your record with a health professional.)
- On a formal basis, by you requesting in writing a copy of the record to the DPA Administrator, Lancashire and South Cumbria NHS Foundation Trust, Unit 7, Astra Business Centre, Roman Way, Preston, Lancashire, PR2 5AP or you can email your request to DPA@lancashirecare.nhs.uk. You can also apply by clicking on the link at the foot of this page and completing the Request for Access to Health records Form.
You are only entitled to your own personal data, and not to information relating to other people (unless the information is also about you or you are acting on behalf of someone).
You have a right to apply for access if:
- You are the Service user.
- You have parental responsibility for a Service User who is a under the age of 12.
- You are the person authorised in writing to make an application on behalf of the patient. (This requires the patient's signature) this includes Children from the age of 12.
- You are a person appointed by the court to manage the patient's affairs when they are unable to e.g. Lasting Power of Attorney for Health and Wellbeing (documented proof must be provided)
Who helps protect your information?
The Trust is committed to looking after your personal information and it is the responsibility of all staff throughout the organisation to make sure of this.
The Trust employs specific roles to provide leadership and direction to ensure accountability and transparency to support compliance with Data Protection law.
Access to Health records of the deceased
The Access to Health Records Act 1990 provides certain individuals with a right of access to the health record of a deceased individual, though some information may be redacted. These include the executor or administrator of the deceased person’s estate and a person who may have a claim arising out of the patient’s death (documented proof must be provided)
How do I request copies of a deceased person’s record?
You need to either write to the DPA Administrator, email DPA@lancashirecare.nhs.uk or complete the Trust’s Request for Access to Health records Form by clicking on the link at the foot of this page and provide proof of identity and evidence of entitlement to access.
Third Party Access requests from Solicitors or Insurance Companies
Third party applications from Solicitors or Insurance companies in relation to third party personal injury claims require written consent from the patient before records can be disclosed. These requests are processed by the DPA Administrator or local SAR Handler.
What is the timeframe for receiving copies of health records?
The General Data Protection Regulations and the Data Protection Act 2018 states that copies of records must be provided within 30 calendar days.
We aim to provide copies of health records within 30 calendar days of receiving your request. We will inform you of any delays.
In some circumstances the Trust is legally required to withhold all or some of the information held in an individual’s health record:
- Where the identity of an individual cannot be satisfied by the Trust.
- Where consent of the individual has not been given, but is legally required.
- Where it has been judged that supplying the information is likely to cause serious harm to the physical or mental health or condition of the Service User or any other person.
- Where providing access would disclose information relating to or provided by a third party who had not consented to the disclosure. This exemption may not apply where that third party is a health professional involved in the care of the individual.
- If a deceased person had indicated that they did not wish information to be disclosed, or the record contains information that the deceased person expected to remain confidential.
Retention of Records
Records are held by the Trust in accordance with the Information Governance Alliance, records Management Code of Practice for Health and Social Care 2016 Guideline
If you wish to make an application you can click on the link below or apply in writing or via email
Please complete and return the form below to firstname.lastname@example.org
For requests being made via email should be sent to DPA@lancashirecare.nhs.uk
For requests being made via letter should be sent to:
Lancashire and South Cumbria NHS Foundation Trust
Astra Business Centre