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We use your information in several ways which includes enabling us to provide you with the highest quality of care, allowing us to improve the care provided to both yourself and others by managing, planning and improving NHS services.

Your information is used by clinical and administrative staff to provide you with treatment and care. This includes health professionals based in other locations, e.g. your GP, other NHS hospitals or Trusts and social services

We work in partnership with other NHS organisations and clinical staff employed by other NHS organisations that could be consulted for an expert opinion relating to your care. Your information could be shared with other organisations such as another NHS hospitals or Trusts, your GP and social services. You may need to be transferred to another hospital for further treatment. We also work with social services staff whilst you are still in hospital to plan your discharge home. Information relating to your discharge arrangements may be recorded by Social Services.

For the hospital to undertake clinical audits 

We have an annual clinical audit program which requires all clinical staff to participate. These Audits enable us to monitor and improve the quality of care and treatment provided to you. Clinical staff across the Trust will review patient health records to review the care provided and to identify ways in which the care could be improved in the future.

Student training

We are a teaching hospital and regularly has student doctors, nurses, physiotherapists and other allied health professionals working within our clinical teams. Students will have access to your health records if they are involved in your care. If you do not wish for your health records to be used in this way, please discuss this with your healthcare professional.

To investigate complaints, incidents or legal claims

Staff within the Legal team and Complaints department will need to access your health records and may need to share this information with other hospital or Trust staff and external third parties if applicable e.g. Solicitors, NHS Litigation Authority, in order to deal with issues raised or to process your complaint or legal claim. We take patient safety very seriously so if an incident occurs that was not expected the hospital will investigate. In this instance the staff involved in your care, with the support of our Risk Management department, would access your health records.

To undertake health service management/planning which entails preparing statistics on our performance to ensure that we can meet patient needs in the future.

Statistical information about patient care is collated by us e.g. the length of time patients are treated in the Emergency Department, how long patients have waited for an outpatient appointment, etc. This is because every NHS hospital or Trust is performance managed and this information allows our hospital to improve the services it provides This information will be anonymised or coded so individual patients cannot be identified.

Where appropriate, to ask you to participate in a research project. All research projects are approved by a Research Ethics Committee.

Our Research and Development Department manages all research projects undertaken in the hospital. Your participation in any research project is entirely voluntary and will only occur with your explicit consent.If you would like to know more about how we use your information, or if for any reason, you do not wish to have your information used or shared in any of the ways described please contact our Data Protection Officer on

Who we may share information with

  • NHS hospitals and Trusts
  • Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs)
  • General Practitioners (GPs) this includes connection with other systems in primary care to share electronic information
  • Ambulance services

Your information may also, subject to strict agreements describing how it will be used, be shared with:

  • NHS Common Services Agencies such as Primary Care Agencies
  • Social Services
  • Education Services
  • Local Authorities
  • Voluntary Sector Providers
  • Private Sector Providers
  • The Patient Demographics Service (PDS) and the Secondary Users Services (SUS)
  • Cancer Registry
  • The Care Quality Commission (CQC)
  • Approved contractors under the NHS Patient Survey

There are occasions where we have a legal duty to pass patient information to external organisations.

These include:

  • If a serious crime has been committed
  • If there are risks to the public or our staff
  • To protect vulnerable adults
  • Legal duty such as report some infectious diseases, wounding by firearms or court orders

We will share information with other NHS organisations to receive payment for your care. Anyone who receives information from us is also under a legal duty to keep it confidential and secure.

We receive payment for the service we provide to patients. Clinical Commissioning Groups are responsible for paying us for these services. In order to be paid for the services delivered, information on patient’s treatment needs to be passed to these Clinical Commissioning Groups. The information is coded so individual patients cannot be identified. However in some cases, the names of the patients will need to be provided e.g. when requesting funding for high cost drugs or specialised care.

We share patient information with other external NHS organisations which operate to oversee and address issues relating to the management of the whole NHS, which contributes to providing an efficient and effective NHS.

These organisations include the NHS Business Services Authority, which includes the NHS Counter Fraud Services and NHS Prescription Services etc. The NHS Counter Fraud Services is responsible for policy and operational matters relating to the prevention, detection and investigation of fraud in the NHS. In some instances information relating to patients will be shared with the NHS Counter Fraud Services. The NHS Counter Fraud Services may also collect information on reported security incidents (e.g. thefts of patient/staff property, assaults on NHS staff) from each NHS hospital to collate information to identify patterns in these incidents.

The NHS has put in place measures to ensure the safety of all patients and NHS staff while also ensuring services are available to the public as normal. If you have a hospital appointment then you should attend as planned.
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