Access to Records

  • Created by: Lisa
  • Created on: 08-12-12 16:17
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    • All patients have the right to see their own records, reports, X ray films and electronically stored data under the Data Protection Act 1998 and the Access to Health Records Act 1990.
      • 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.
    • Patients can access their own health records by 1) they can make a formal request after leaving 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 to the particular hospital/ trust. The trust has 40 days in which to complete most applications.
      • 2) 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 a doctor, nurse or other health care professional to show them what has been written about them, or to see their X rays or reports. The professional is allowed to show only their particular part of the record. This is called Informal Access.
    • Under the Data Protection Act 1998, the following can have access to their records:
      • The Patient
      • A person authorised in writing to make an application on the patients behalf.
      • A person with parental responsibility when the patient is a child under 16 years of age. however parents can't see what information has been given in confidence.
      • 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 patients representative and any persons who may have a claim arising out of the patients death.
    • The applicant also has the right to :
      • an explanation of any terms in the records they do not understand. e.g. technical language or terminology.
      • To restrict access to all or part of their health record after their death.
      • To make a formal complaint to the Chief Executive of the Trust, if the applicant feels that they have not been allowed to see their records.
      • 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.
      • The right to ask for any corrections to be made, if the professional agrees with what you say. If not then a note of your views must be included in to your health records. (A copy of the corrections can also be requested.)
      • Act mainly covers records that involve housing and social services.
      • Every service user has a right to see personal data about themselves, held on computer or paper.
        • The Act provides a right of access to personal information about the client, held by public authorieis and private bodies.


Sam Morran


I like the amount of information included and the layout of this resource.  It is easy to follow and identify the key points.

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