Access to health care records act 2000

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  • Access to Health Care Records Act 2000
    • Health records consist of information relating to the physical or mental health condition of an individual and have been made by, or on behalf of, a health professional in connection with the care of that individual.
    • All patients have the right to see their own health records, reports, x-ray films and electronically stored data, under the Data Protection Act 1998 and the Access to Health Records Act 1990. In addition, personal representatives of deceased patients and any person who has a claim arising from the patient's death may have access to the records under the Access to Health Records Act 1990.
    • Two ways by which patients may access their own health records:
      • They can make a formal request after leaving the hospital or consultation, whereby they can either receive a copy of the records or make an appointment to view the records at the hospital. The request must be made in writing by completing and returning an application form.
        • Not usually necessarily.
      • An informal request can be made by the patient at the time of consultation or during their time as an in-patient. In this case the patient can ask the doctor, nurse or other health professional to show them what has been written about them.
    • Under the Data Protection Act 1998, the following can have access to their records:
      • The patient
      • A person appointed by the court to manage the patient's affairs because the patient is legally incapable of managing their own affairs.
      • Where the patient has died, the patient's personal representative(s) and any persons who have a claim arising out of the patient's death.
      • A person authorised in writing to make an application on the patent's behalf.
      • A person with parental responsibility when the patient is a child under 16 years of age. No right to see information that has been given in confidence.
    • The applicant also has a right to the following:
      • to make an application to the High Court if the applicant thinks that the holder of the record has failed to keep to the requirements of the Act
      • to make a forhe Chief Executive of the Trust, if the applicant feels that they have not been allowed to see their records
      • an explanation of any terms in the records that they do not understand
      • the righs to be made to the record if the professional agrees with what you say.
      • to restrict access to all or part of their health record after their death
    • A patient can usually see everything that has been written about him/her, except any information that was given in confidence to a health professional by a third party.


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