(A copy of this agreement is signed by every staff member/worker)
I understand that all information about patients held by Church Road Surgery is strictly confidential, including the fact of a particular patient having visited the Surgery.
I will abide by the confidentiality guidelines set out below.
I have read the Staff Confidentiality Policy above and fully understand my obligations and the consequences of any breach of confidentiality. I understand that a breach of these obligations may result in dismissal.
I understand that any breach, or suspected breach, of confidentiality by me after I have left the Practice’s employment will be passed to the Practice’s lawyers for action.
If I hold a professional qualification and my right to Practice depends on that qualification being registered with a governing body, it is my responsibility to have read and understood their advice on confidentiality.
- Confidentiality Guidelines:
- Be aware that careless talk can lead to a breach of confidentiality – discuss your work only with authorised personnel, preferably in private.
- Always keep confidential documents away from prying eyes.
- Verbal reporting should be carried out in private. If this is not possible, it should be delivered in a volume such that it can only be heard by those for whom it is intended.
- When asking for confidential information in circumstances where the conversation can be overheard by others, conduct the interview in as quiet and discreet a manner as possible and preferably find somewhere private for the discussion.
- There may be times when a young person attends on their own. On such occasions it may not be appropriate to enquire further as to the reason for the visit, and a referral to a clinician, or a Practice nurse for triage, may be more appropriate.
- Information should be given over the telephone only to the patient or, in the case of children, to their parent or guardian. Precautions should be taken to prevent the conversation being overheard. Care must be taken to ensure that the duty of confidentiality to a minor is not breached, even to a parent.
- The duty of confidentiality owed to a person under 16 is as great as the duty owed to any other person.
- When using computers, unauthorised access should be prevented by password protection and physical security such as locking the doors when offices are left unattended. Where possible, VDU screens should be positioned so they are visible only to the user. Unwanted paper records should be disposed of safely by shredding on site and computer files on hard or floppy disks should be wiped clean when no longer required.
- If unsure about authorisation to disclose, or a person’s authorisation to receive confidential information, always seek authorisation from a Partner or the Practice Manager before disclosing any personal health information.
- Medical records and information must not be handed to the patient or relative. The traffic of such information, i.e. from one department to another, must be co-ordinated by the Practice staff.