POLICY FOR INFORMING PATIENTS OF RESULTS OF INVESTIGATIONS
The process for informing patients, or where appropriate, families and carers of the results of investigations is very dependant upon the individual, the circumstances and the results of the investigation.
Our general policy is that the doctor/nurse will contact you if there is a need to address anything, but if you have not heard anything and wish to check, please contact the practice reception at least a week after the investigation.
Your doctor/nurse will inform you of this policy at the point of initiating the investigation.
At the point of your test being done, Practice nurses and Health Care Assistants will check that your records contain current contact information and ensure that you are aware of and understand this policy
APPOINTMENT MONITORING & AVAILABILITY STANDARDS
In Tweeddale, we monitor the availability of our appointments on a weekly basis. We use a method approved by the Royal College of General Practitioners which is known as the “3rd available appointment” – this is a recognised international standard measure.
As a practice, we aim to supply the following appointment availability.
Patients can normally be assessed by a doctor or nurse within 2 working days
– if you require urgent medical attention, please inform the reception team. We have a Duty doctor every day who will assess your case and consult with you as necessary (either in person or by telephone).
Patients who request a named doctor or nurse are normally seen within 7 working days
– you can request a face-to-face or a bookable telephone appointment with the doctor or nurse of your choice. The standard of 7 days is pro rata to the number of days that the named person works per week and does not include weekends, public holidays or annual leave.
Patients who want to can make an appointment at least 48 hours in advance.
- we make appointments available for patients to book at least 2 weeks in advance but we strive to make appointments available up to 4-6 weeks in advance.
We would welcome comments/feedback on our availability standards. Comments/suggestion forms are available at our practice reception or you can submit your feedback on this website via the Contact Us page.
EQUAL OPPORTUNITIES - SERVICE PROVISION
will ensure that all visitors are treated with dignity and respect
will promote equality of opportunity between men and women
will not tolerate any discrimination or perceived discrimination against, or harassment of, any visitor for reason of age, sex, gender, marital status, pregnancy, race, ethnicity, disability, sexual orientation (i.e. LGBT - lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender), religion or belief
will provide the same treatment and services (including the ability to register with the practice) to any visitor irrespective of age, sex, marital status, pregnancy, race, ethnicity, disability, sexual orientation, medical condition, religion or belief
The practice actively promotes and supports the ethos and the requirements of the Equality Act 2010 .
All patients have the right to request a chaperone (an impartial observer) to be present if they require an intimate examination, regardless of whether the clinician is male or female.
A chaperone will,
- be sensitive and respect the patient’s dignity and confidentiality
- reassure the patient if they show signs of distress or discomfort
- be familiar with the procedures involved in a routine intimate examination
- stay for the whole examination and be able to see what the doctor is doing, if practical
- be prepared to raise concerns if they are concerned about the doctor’s behaviour or actions.
- The chaperone will only be present for the examination itself, and most discussion between the clinician and the patient will take place while the chaperone is not present.
A relative or friend of the patient is not an impartial observer and so would not usually be a suitable chaperone.
All of our practice nurses and Health Care Assistants are trained chaperones.
Where necessary, this should be offered to you but please do not hesitate to let the doctor or nurse know if you would like to use this service.
INFORMATION FOR PATIENTS AND HEALTH PROMOTION
We have a reference folder about various medical problems and other information in our waiting room. Please feel free to read the folder and copies of leaflets can be requested at reception.
CONFIDENTIALITY & DATA PROTECTION ACT
The practice adheres to the highest standards in relation to confidentiality and data security.
The practice is registered and conforms to the laws as specified in the Data Protection Act 1998.
We adhere to the principles of the Caldicott report set out for health and social care organisations;
- Justify the purpose
- Don't use patient identifiable information unless it is necessary
- Use the minimum necessary patient-identifiable information
- Access to patient identifiable information should be on a strict need-to-know basis
- Everyone with access to patient identifiable information should be aware of their responsibilities
- Understand and comply with the law
- The duty to share information can be as important as the duty to protect patient confidentiality
Current electronic systems for sharing of information within the NHS;
Emergency Care Summary (ECS) - This is a summary of basic information about your health which might be important if you need urgent medical care when your GP surgery is closed, or when you go to an accident and emergency department. It means that all NHS staff looking after you can get important information about your health, even if they cannot contact your GP surgery. It contains the following information:
- Your name
- Your date of birth
- The name of your GP surgery
- An identifying number called a CHI number (there is more about the CHI number later)
- Information about any medicines prescribed by your GP surgery
- Any bad reactions you've had to medicines that your GP knows about
Click here to read more about your ECS
If you do not wish your information to be shared in this way, please inform the Practice Manager.
Key Information Summary (KIS) - The Key Information Summary is further information in addition to your ECS. It includes a summary of your medical history and patient wishes taken from the GP electronic record. It will be available to clinicians working in NHS 24 and Out of Hours services if you need care when your GP surgery is closed.
With your permission , your Key Information Summary will include information on your:
- Allergies and reactions to medicines
- Contact information
- Care plans
- Next of kin and carer details
- Wishes or special instructions
- Management plans if you have a long term condition (such as diabetes)
- Preferred place of care
If your GP feels it would benefit your care for this additional information to be added to your ECS, they will discuss this with you and ask for your explicit consent.
Patient Information Leaflet - English
Patient Information Leaflet - Gaelic
Patient Information Leaflet - Polish
Patient Information Leaflet - Easy Read
Patient Information - British Sign Language Video Clip
Need To Know - Information about your past medical history, medication and allergies will only be shared with NHS colleagues on a "Need To Know" basis, i.e. if they require that information to enable them to provide the best quality health care for you.
Practice Assessments - All practices undergo regular visits by external assessors, whose purpose is to verify the process of the practices’ quality of care to the patient. They may need to view records of random patients. The visiting team adheres to a strict code of confidentiality. If you do not wish your records to be inspected, please inform the Practice Manager.
Outwith the NHS - We will never share your personal identifiable information with anyone outside of the NHS without your express consent, unless we are required to by law (which would only happen in very exceptional circumstances and even then, where practical, we would inform you of such disclosure).
Anonymised Data Extracts - sometimes we are asked to participate in projects where anonymised data is required for measuring and understanding health service issues and used to help to the inform and plan the future direction of the NHS. Each data extraction request is considered by the practice on it's own merit before any approval is given. If you do not wish your data to be used for anonymised data extractions, please inform the Practice Manager and we will ensure that your wishes are upheld.
Research Projects - see our Research page.
ACCESS TO MEDICAL RECORDS
You are entitled to access your clinical records held by the practice. A request to access your medical records should be done in writing or by completing our application form and should include your name, date of birth, exactly what information you require and whether you wish access to read this information or copies of this information. Your written application should be submitted to the practice and your this will be processed no later than 40 days from the date of your request, usually within 21 days. A charge may apply for this service of between £10-£50 maximum. You will be advised of any fee prior to your application being completed. This fee is payable on access and we will require to verify your identity.
We can also provide alternative formats or assistance with your application.
Access to Medical Records - Patient Leaflet
Access to Medical Records - Application Form
YOUR RIGHTS & RESPONSIBILITIES
All surgeries are by appointment and these can be made by telephone or in person at reception. Every attempt will be made to fit urgent cases into the next available surgery on the same day. The practice also has the authority to remove from the list, any patients who constantly abuse the appointments system. Please telephone to cancel your appointment if it is no longer needed, so your appointment can be allocated to another patient.
IF A PATIENT IS VIOLENT OR ABUSIVE
This practice operates a zero-tolerance policy of verbal or physical aggression towards any practice staff. The practice has the right to remove patients from the list because of persisting unacceptable behaviour.
FREEDOM OF INFORMATION (Scotland) ACT 2002
Came into force on 1st January 2005 and enables any person requesting information from a public body to receive that information, subject to certain exemptions. This is to encourage public authorities (GP practices) to be more open and accountable and organise their information in an efficient and accessible way. This excludes personal data. The practice Publication Scheme Document is available here.