Patient Information

How do I check my test results?

How do I make a complaint?

How do I access my medical records?

 

How do I check my test results?

Results of most blood tests will usually be available after four working days. X-ray results take about 10 days to be reported to the practice, and other test results such as histology are normally available within two weeks after the test was performed.

We can only give results to the person on whom the test was performed. Test results will not be given to other family members unless they are for a child.

We would be grateful if you could request your results after 2pm when the surgery is less busy. We are not able to email results directly to you as we wish to ensure that your confidentiality is maintained.

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How do I make a complaint?

If you have a complaint or concern about the service you have received from the doctors or any of the staff working in this practice, please let us know. We operate a practice complaints procedure which conforms with NHS recommendations and national criteria.

We hope that most problems can be sorted out easily and quickly, often at the time they arise and with the person concerned. If your problem cannot be sorted out in this way and you wish to make a complaint, we would like you to let us know as soon as possible – ideally, within a matter of days or at most a few weeks – this will enable us to establish what happened more easily. If it is not possible to do that, please let us have details of your complaint:

  • · · Within 6 months of the incident that caused the problem or
  • · · Within 6 months of discovering that you have a problem, provided this is within 12 months of the incident.

Complaints should be addressed to the Practice Services Manager or any of the doctors. Alternatively, you may ask for an appointment with the Practice Manager in order to discuss your concerns. She will explain the complaints procedure to you and will make sure that your concerns are dealt with promptly. It will be a great help if you are as specific as possible about your complaint.

What we will do

We will acknowledge your complaint within two working days and aim to have looked into your complaint within ten working days of the date when you raised the complaint with us. We shall then be in a position to offer you an explanation, or a meeting with the person(s) involved. When we look into your complaint, we shall aim to:

  • · · Find out what happened and what went wrong
  • · · Make it possible for you to discuss the problem with those concerned, if you would like this
  • · · Make sure you receive an apology, where this is appropriate
  • · · Identify what we can do to make sure the problem does not happen again

Complaining on behalf of someone else

Please note that we keep strictly to the rules of medical confidentiality. If you are complaining on behalf of someone else, we have to know that you have his or her permission to do so. A note signed by the person concerned will be needed, unless they are incapable (because of illness) of providing this.

Complaining to the Surrey Downs Clinical Commissioning Group (SDCCG)

We hope that, if you have a problem, you will use our practice complaints procedure. We believe this will give us the best chance of putting right whatever has gone wrong and an opportunity to improve our practice. This does not affect your right to approach the Surrey Downs CCG complaints/feedback team at http://www.surreydownsccg.nhs.uk/get-involved/give-us-feedback/

You may also like to contact Health Complaints Advocacy Service on 0330 440 9000, www.seap.org.uk

In addition to these services you have the right to contact Heather Gallagher at the Patient Advice and Liaison Service based at Leatherhead hospital on 01372-384387.

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How do I access my medical records?

Doctors have always had the discretion to allow patients to see their health records and to share information where appropriate with the carers of children and incapacitated adults. Additionally in recent years Acts of Parliament have given certain statutory rights of access to records. None of the legislation prevents doctors from informally showing patients their records or, bearing in mind duties of confidentiality, discussing relevant health issues with carers.

The implementation of data protection legislation in early 2000 changed patients’ statutory rights of access to their health records. The purpose of this guidance is to set out in some detail the legal requirements on doctors as holders of health records. This summary highlights the main points.

What records are covered?

All manual and computerised health records about living people are accessible under the Data Protection Act 1998.

Does it matter when the records were made?

No, access must be given equally to all records regardless of when they were made.

Does the Act cover all of the UK?

Yes.

Who can apply for access?

Competent patients may apply for access to their own records, or may authorise a third party, such as their lawyer, to do so on their behalf. Parents may have access to their child’s records if this is in the child’s best interests and not contrary to a competent child’s wishes. People appointed by a court to manage the affairs of mentally incapacitated adults may have access to information necessary to fulfill their function.

Are there any exemptions?

Yes, the main exemptions are that information must not be disclosed if it:

  • · is likely to cause serious physical or mental harm to the patient or another person; or
  • · relates to a third party who has not given consent for disclosure (where that third party is not a health professional who has cared for the patient).
  • Must copies of the records be given if requested?Yes, patients are entitled to a copy of their records, for example a photocopy of paper records or print out of computerised records.Can a fee be charged?Yes, and the fee varies depending on the type of record and whether the patient wants copies of the records or just to see them.To provide access and copies:Records held totally on computer: £10
    Records held in part on computer and in part manually: a reasonable fee of up to £50
    Records held totally manually: a reasonable fee of up to £50To allow patients to read their records (where no copy is required):

    Records held totally on computer: £10
    Records held in part on computer and in part manually: £10
    Records held totally manually: £10 unless the records have been added to in the last 40 days when no charge can be made

    If you are applying to access your health record you will need to

    • · Complete the form “Access to Health Records” available from reception.
    • · Provide two types of identification as well as proof of current address. Photocopies should initially be provided, but original copies must be available when collecting your information.
    • · An initial administration fee of £10.00 will be charged. This must be paid by cash or cheque. Please make all cheques payable to Eastwick Park Medical Practice.
    • · There may be an additional charge payable when you collect your results as detailed above.
  • What about access to the records of deceased patients?The Data Protection Act 1998 only covers the records of living patients. If a person has a claim arising from the death of an individual, he or she has a right of access to information in the deceased’s records necessary to fulfill that claim. These rights are set out in the Access to Health Records Act 1990 or Access to Health Records (Northern Ireland) Order 1993. The provisions and fees are slightly different from those in the Data Protection Act.If you wish to access your medical records please contact reception for an application form. Guidance on confidentiality and on sharing information with relatives and carers is available from the BMA’s Medical Ethics Department.

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