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Whitley Bay Health Centre
Whitley Road
Whitley Bay Tyne and Wear NE26 2ND

Your Electronic Health Record – a Patient Guide

Updated on 10th July 2017 at 12:33 pm


Today, electronic records are kept in most of the places where you receive healthcare, for
example at your GP surgery or Out of Hours clinic.
This care service uses the clinical computer system SystmOne, which enables your full electronic
record to be shared to anyone involved in your direct care, across different healthcare services.
A full list of the care services that use SystmOne is below.
You have choices about whether or not your information is available to other providers who
care for you.
Why is sharing my health
information important?
Your electronic health record contains lots of information about you, including your medical
history, the types of medication you take, any allergies you have and demographic information
like your home address and your next of kin.
In many cases, particularly for patients with complex conditions, the shared record plays a
vital role in delivering the best care. Health and social care professionals can ensure a coordinated
care response, taking into account all aspects of a person’s physical and mental health.
Whilst some patients have extensive knowledge of their conditions and care requirements, this
is not true for everyone. Many patients are understandably not able to provide a full account
of their care. The shared record means patients do not have to repeat their medical histories at every care setting, or make guesses about their previous care.
A shared record ensures health or social care professionals always have the most accurate, up to
date information. They can rely on their colleagues, sharing accurate and relevant data in a timely way, to provide you with safe and efficient care.

Which care services could I go to that could access my patient record?
• GP practices
• Community services such as district nurses, rehabilitation centres, tele-health and diabetes services
• Child health services that undertake scheduling of treatments such as vaccinations
• Urgent care organisations such as Minor Injury Units and Out of Hours services
• Community hospitals
• Palliative care hospices and community services
• Offender health – care providers within the health units
• NHS Mental health trusts
• NHS Hospital trusts
• Accident and Emergency departments
• Care Homes
• Pharmacy
• Social care – registered and regulated professionals within social care organisations coordinating care (not social care providers).

To provide the best care, your electronic health record will be made available to other services involved in your care. Until you are registered at one of the care services on the previous page, no information about you will be shared to them. Although your record is automatically setup to share your information, you can ask your doctor for this option to be switched off. This will mean none of the information recorded by your doctor will be visible at any other care service.
The only exceptions when your data will be accessed
• When you visit the other care service, you give your permission to override your previous dissent, allowing them to view your record including any items marked as private.
•If your clinician has concerns regarding your well-being related to safeguarding, for example
concerns about domestic abuse.
If you would prefer that the override option above is never made available, you have the ability to request your doctor prevents it. However, this means your data will never be available at other care services.
Can I choose what is made available?
What choices do I have?
To give you the most personalised care, it is recommended that you share your whole health record with every service that cares for you. However, you have control over your record and have the choice to specify specific elements of the record you don’t want to be shared.
For example, if you have had a consultation about a particularly sensitive matter, you can ask for this section of the record to be marked as private. That way, even if you consent for another service to see your record, that consultation will not be shown. If a consent override is used, then consultations marked as private will be accessible.

What choices do I have?

When thinking about how your information is shared, you as the patient can specify three main controls:
1. Do you enable your record to be shared at all? If you have said ‘yes’ to sharing out from this organisation,
for every care setting you visit you still get to decide if they can view your record. You do not have to make the same choice for every organisation.
2. You can specify entries in your record that you want to remain confidential. These can only be viewed by the care service they were originally recorded at (unless the consent override is used for the reasons stated above). You can then decide if the rest of your record is shared at each care setting you visit.
3. Saying no at this stage means no other care service can see any of your record. If you don’t want
your record to ever be viewed by anyone you have a further choice to request that consent override is prevented.

Opt out forms for all sharing issues are available at Reception.