Confidentiality policy for the practice team
When attending the practice for dental care, patients provide us with personal information about their health on the understanding that we keep this information confidential and that it will not be divulged without the patient’s consent. Most patients would most likely be reluctant to provide personal health information if they believed it would be passed on.
In addition to practice systems for storing this information securely, each member of the team is under a strict duty to maintain the confidentiality of all personal information held by the practice.
The duty of confidentiality
Your contact of employment or contracts for services at the practice require you to maintain the confidentiality of patient information. A breach of this requirement, could end your employment with the practice or contract for services.
For registrants, a breach of confidentiality, may lead to an investigation by GDC into their fitness to practise; individual registrants are responsible for their professional conduct. A patient may also bring legal action for damages.
Dentists may also be prosecuted for breaching statutory data protection requirements.
Personal information about a patient Is confidential to the patient and to those providing the patient with health care, who require the information to provide effective care and treatment.
You must not disclose personal information to third parties without the consent of the patient, unless it is required by law or the dentist is pursuing a bona fide legal claim against the patient the information is required by a solicitor, court or debt-collecting agency. The responsibility for disclosure rests with the responsible dentist; other members of the team cannot take the decision to disclose.
It may be right to disclose personal information without consent to government agencies, including HMRC, the police or social services. In all cases, you should obtain details of what information is needed and why. Only information that it is necessary to comply with the law should be disclosed. You must always obtain professional advice before releasing information on these grounds.
Disclosure of information is needed to
he practice privacy notices for patients, employees and associates describe the personal information that we collect, how we use it and how we store it safely and securely. Copies of the notices are available from Julie Hayne
If you collect, use, store or destroy personal information, you should be familiar with the relevant privacy notice and ensure that you are dealing with the personal information as described in the notice.
Patients can request access to their health records. The treating dentist should receive the request and the patient be given the opportunity to discuss the records before being given a copy; the patient’s identity must be checked and confirmed.
The copy of the record must be supplied within one month of the request.
Patients must make a written request for access to their medical records. No fee is payable (except if a patient makes multiple requests)
Everyone involved with recording information about patients attending the practice must ensure that records are:
Marlborough Dental Centre does not send marketing emails.
If you request the practice to delete any information not all information can be deleted and requests to delete information must be managed in accordance with data protection laws. These requests must be passed to Julie Hayne for action.
Records must be kept secure and in a location where it is not possible for other patients or individuals to read them
Patients should not be able to see information contained in appointment books, day sheets or computer screens
Discussions about patients must not take place in public areas of the practice
When talking to a patient on the telephone or in person in a public area, sensitive information must not be overheard by other patients
Messages about a patient’s care must not be left with third parties or left on answering machines. Unless consent has been otherwise sort and signed by the patient. A message to call the practice is all that can be left
Recall cards and other personal information must be sent in an envelope
Identifiable information about patients must not be discussed with anyone outside of the practice including relatives or friends
Demonstrations of the practice’s administrative/computer systems must not involve actual patient information
Information about a patient’s appointment must not be given to third parties – for example, schools and employers – unless the patient has given consent
Appointment books, record cards or other information must not be disclosed to police officers or HM Revenue and Customs officials without instruction by the responsible dentist.
If, after investigation, we find that you have breached patient confidentiality or have failed to follow this policy, you may be liable to summary dismissal in accordance with the practice disciplinary policy. A copy the disciplinary policy is available from Julie Hayne.
Upon termination of your employment or contract for services, you must respect the confidentiality of all personal information held by the practice. You must not knowingly obtain or disclose personal information without the consent of Julie Hayne . If the practice believes that you have done so, we will inform the Office of the Information Commissioner; you may, as a consequence, be prosecuted by the Commissioner or the Director of Public Prosecutions.
Monday 8.30am – 4.30pm
Tuesday 8.30am – 4.30pm
Wednesday 8.30am – 4.30pm
Thursday 8.30am – 4.30pm
Friday 8.30am – 2.00pm
Marlborough Dental Centre
4 Marlborough Road
Phone: 01271 862556