The following notice applies from 4th July 2022.
1. About St Leonards Medical Centre
This practice is an independent contractor providing primary medical services by way of a contract with NHS Lothian, made under the National Health Service (Scotland) Act 1978 (the 1978 Act). It is one of the organisations which form part of NHS Scotland (NHSS).
2. About the personal information we use
We use personal information on different groups of individuals including:
The personal information we use includes information that identifies you like your name, address, date of birth and postcode.
We also use more sensitive types of personal information, including information about racial or ethnic origin; political opinions; religious or philosophical beliefs; trade union membership; genetic and biometric data, health; sex life or sexual orientation.
The information we use can relate to personal and family details; education, training and employment details; financial details; lifestyle and social circumstances; goods and services; visual images; details held in the patient record; responses to surveys.
3. Our purposes for using personal information
Under the 1978 Act St Leonards Medical Centre has the statutory responsibility to provide or arrange for the provision of a range of healthcare, health improvement and health protection services. We are given these tasks so that we can help to promote the improvement of the physical and mental health of the people of NHS Lothian and assist in operating a comprehensive and integrated national health service in Scotland.
We use personal information to enable us to provide healthcare services for patients (including reminding you of appointments), data matching under the national fraud initiative; research; supporting and managing our employees; maintaining our accounts and records and the use of CCTV systems for crime prevention.
4. Our legal basis for using personal information
St Leonards Medical Centre as data controller, is required to have a legal basis when using personal information. St Leonards Medical Centre considers that performance of our tasks and functions are in the public interest. So, when using personal information our legal basis is usually that its use is necessary for the performance of a task carried out in the public interest, or in the exercise of official authority vested in us. In some situations, we may rely on a different legal basis; for example, when we are using personal information to pay a supplier, our legal basis is that its use is necessary for the purposes of our legitimate interests as a buyer of goods and services. Another example would be for compliance with a legal obligation to which St Leonards Medical Centre is subject to, for example under the Public Health etc (Scotland) Act 2008 we are required to notify Health Protection Scotland when someone contracts a specific disease.
When we are using more sensitive types of personal information, including health information, our legal basis is usually that the use is necessary:
On rare occasions we may rely on your explicit consent as our legal basis for using your personal information. When we do this, we will explain what it means, and the rights that are available, to you. You should be aware that we will continue to ask for your consent for other things like taking part in a drug trial, or when you are having an operation.
5. Who provides the personal information
When you do not provide information directly to us, we receive it from other individuals and organisations involved in the delivery of health and care services in Scotland. These include other NHS Boards and primary care contractors such as GPs, dentists, pharmacists and opticians, other public bodies e.g. Local Authorities and suppliers of goods and services.
6. Sharing personal information with others
Depending on the situation, where necessary we will share appropriate, relevant and proportionate personal information in compliance with the law, with the following:
7. Transferring personal information abroad
It is sometimes necessary to transfer personal health information overseas for example if you require urgent medical treatment abroad. When this is needed information may be transferred to countries or territories around the world. Any transfers made will be in full compliance with NHS Scotland Information Security Policy.
8. Retention periods of the information we hold
Within St Leonards Medical Centre we keep personal information as set out in the Scottish Government Records Management: HEALTH AND SOCIAL CARE CODE OF PRACTICE (SCOTLAND) 2020. The Code of Practice sets out minimum retention periods for information, including personal information, held in different types of records including personal health records and administrative records. As directed by the Scottish Government in the Records Management Code of Practice, we maintain a retention schedule as part of our Records Management policy detailing the minimum retention period for the information and procedures for the safe disposal of personal information.
9. How we protect personal information
We take care to ensure your personal information is only accessible to authorised people. Our staff have a legal and contractual duty to keep personal health information secure, and confidential. The following security measures are in place to protect personal information:
10. Your rights
This section contains a description of your data protection rights within St Leonards Medical Centre.
The right to be informed
St Leonards Medical Centre must explain how we use your personal information. We use a number of ways to communicate how personal information is used, including:
The right of access
You have the right to access your own personal information.
This right includes making you aware of what information we hold along with the opportunity to satisfy you that we are using your information fairly and legally.
You have the right to obtain:
Although we must provide this information free of charge, if your request is considered unfounded or excessive, or if you request the same information more than once, we may charge a reasonable fee.
If you would like to access your personal information, you can do this by submitting a written request to the Practice Manager.
Please note, emails from your private email address may not be secure.
Once we have received your request and you have provided us with enough information for us to locate your personal information, we will respond to your request without delay, within one month (30 days). However, if your request is complex we may take longer, by up to two months, to respond. If this is the case, we will tell you and explain the reason for the delay.
The right to rectification
If the personal information we hold about you is inaccurate or incomplete you have the right to have this corrected.
If it is agreed that your personal information is inaccurate or incomplete, we will aim to amend your records accordingly, normally within one month, or within two months where the request is complex. However, we will contact you as quickly as possible to explain this further if the need to extend our timescales applies to your request. Unless there is a risk to patient safety, we can restrict access to your records to ensure that the inaccurate or incomplete information is not used until amended.
If for any reason we have shared your information with anyone else, perhaps during a referral to another service for example, we will notify them of the changes required so that we can ensure their records are accurate.
If on consideration of your request St Leonards Medical Centre does not consider the personal information to be inaccurate then we may add a comment to your record stating your concerns about the information. If this is case we will contact you within one month to explain our reasons for this.
If you are unhappy about how St Leonards Medical Centre has responded to your request for rectification we will provide you with information on how you can complain to the Information Commissioner’s Office, or how to take legal action.
The right to object
When St Leonards Medical Centre is processing your personal information for the purpose of the performance of a task carried out in the public interest or in the exercise of official authority you have the right to object to the processing and also seek that further processing of your personal information is restricted. Provided St Leonards Medical Centre can demonstrate compelling legitimate grounds for processing your personal information, for instance; patient safety or for evidence to support legal claims, your right will not be upheld.
There are other rights under current Data Protection Law however these rights only apply in certain circumstances. For further information on these rights please visit ico.org.uk/for-the-public.
The right to complain
St Leonards Medical Centre employ a Data Protection Officer to check that we handle personal information in a way that meets data protection law. If you are unhappy with the way in which we use your personal information, please tell our Data Protection Officer using the contact details below.
Data Protection Officer
74 Canaan Lane
Phone – 0131 465 5444
Please note emails from your private email address may not be secure.
You also have the right to complain about how we use your personal information to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO). Details about this are on their website at www.ico.org.uk
This GP practice has agreed to take part in the DataLoch research programme. Both your GP practice and NHS Lothian are the data controller for the DataLoch programme (Data is only hosted within NHS Lothian), and are working in partnership with the University of Edinburgh.
The aims of the DataLoch programme are to support research for the benefit of local residents in the South-East Scotland region. A Data Sharing Agreement is in place that covers the sharing of patient data with DataLoch, and all approved research is anonymous.
In line with data protection legislation, the legal basis that permits processing of patient data is:
The DataLoch website covers the researcher data, public enquiries, and newsletter subscriptions for which the University of Edinburgh is the Data Controller: https://dataloch.org/privacy-notice