My Care Record: Frequently Asked Questions
Why has My Care Record been created?
During the My health, My future, My say campaign, you told us you wanted to see better joined-up care. Since then, we have taken great strides in bringing together health and care services across West Essex and Hertfordshire borders in order to improve the experience of patients.
What is My Care Record?
My Care Record is a programme which allows you to give health and care professional’s permission to access your medical records during your care and treatment.
The people caring for you need to access information about your health and care, in order to make the best decisions about your diagnosis and treatment. This could include GPs,
hospital-based clinicians, nurses, health visitors and social workers.
For this to happen more quickly and to improve the care you receive, a new process has been put in place. This will allow your information to be accessed by different health and care organisations, using existing secure computer systems.
Information will only be accessed with your permission – where applicable – and while you are receiving direct treatment by a health and care professional.
Information accessed through My Care Record is treated to the same security standards as all confidential information.
This would include allowing a hospital doctor to see the medication that a GP has prescribed for you when you go into hospital or allowing a GP to see what care, tests or treatment you received while in hospital.
What are the benefits of having a My Care Record?
By making your information available across the health and care system, your GP practice, hospital team or community nurse will be able to see the most up-to- date, accurate information about you and be able to make better and quicker decisions about your care.
This will be especially helpful when care is being provided by a range of professionals, either unplanned or in an emergency situation.
It will allow health and care professionals directly involved in your care to work with you to make safe and fully informed decisions.
As well as providing you with seamless, safer and quicker treatment, it also means you do not have to give the same information to lots of different people, so more time can be spent on your care. It will provide:
- Better co-ordinated and seamless care
- Quicker diagnosis and treatment
- More time to spend on clinical care
- Less paperwork and less repetition
- Fewer unnecessary clinical tests
- More accurate prescriptions
- Safe and secure decision-making
Who can view My Care Record?
Only health and care professionals who are directly involved in your care will have access to your record, with your permission. You will be asked your permission before a Health
and Care professional can access your record.
In an emergency, it may not be possible for you to give your permission to access your record, however, there are strict guidelines for accessing a record without your permission. Each time a health and care professional accesses your information there will be a clear
record of it.
Third parties, private companies or health and care staff who are not directly involved in your care will not be able to access your record.
Are there any exceptions?
Information will only be accessed with your consent and while you are receiving treatment by a health and care professional – unless it is information that is routinely accessed by a GP such as laboratory tests, blood results, past and future appointments.
On occasion, specialists may also need to access your record, for example to interpret the results of your laboratory tests. They may need to check if you are taking any medication or if you have any pre-existing conditions which may affect the results. This is no different from any other health or care professional involved in your direct care accessing your record. By agreeing to the test(s), you are also agreeing to these specialists accessing your record where appropriate.
What information will be made available?
The record accessed is your health and care record. Therefore, My Care Record provides up-to date and relevant health and care information about you, at the time you are being treated by a health or care professional.
Examples of information that will be available include:
- Name, address, NHS Number and phone number
- Test results and investigations
- Clinical history
- Emergency department treatment
- Future and past appointments
- Health plans and alerts
- Mental health alerts and diagnoses
- Social care lead co-ordinator and your care plan.
Can I change my mind?
You are in control and can change your mind at any time to limit who accesses your information. Please talk to your GP Practice who will be able to change your preference.