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How your information is used

The Fair Processing Notice (also known as a Privacy Notice) is part of our programme to make the data processing activities we are carrying out in order to meet our commissioning obligations transparent.

This notice tells you about information we collect and hold about you, what we do with it, how we will look after it and who we might share it with.

This notice is not exhaustive. However, we are happy to provide any additional information or explanation needed. Any requests should be sent to this address:

NHS Berkshire West CCG
57 - 59 Bath Road
Reading
Berkshire
RG30 2BA

Tel: 0118 950 3094

COVID-19 supplementary notice

The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) recognises the unprecedented challenges the NHS and other health professionals are facing during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The ICO also recognise that ‘Public bodies may require additional collection and sharing of personal data to protect against serious threats to public health.’

The Government have also taken action in respect of this and on 20th March 2020 the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care issued a Notice under Regulation 3(4) of The Health Service (Control of Patient Information) Regulations 2002 requiring organisations such as GP Practices to use your information to help GP Practices and other healthcare organisations to respond to and deal with the COVID-19 pandemic.

In order to look after your healthcare needs during this difficult time, we may urgently need to share your personal information, including medical records, with clinical and non-clinical staff who belong to organisations that are permitted to use your information and need to use it to help deal with the Covid-19 pandemic. This could (amongst other measures) consist of either treating you or a member of your family and enable us and other healthcare organisations to monitor the disease, assess risk and manage the spread of the disease.

Please be assured that we will only share information and health data that is necessary to meet yours and public healthcare needs.

The Secretary of State for Health and Social Care has also stated that these measures are temporary. These arrangements were previously in place up to 30th September 2020, later extended to 31 March 2021. Any further extension will be will be provided in writing and we will communicate the same to you. Please also note that the data protection and electronic communication laws do not stop us from sending public health messages to you, either by phone, text or email as these messages are not direct marketing. It may also be necessary, where the latest technology allows us to do so, to use your information and health data to facilitate digital consultations and diagnoses and we will always do this with your security in mind.

Details of the notice and its expiry are published here.

If you are concerned about how your information is being used, please contact our DPO.

The Secretary of State for Health has directed that the following steps be taken:

  • Temporarily removing the requirement for patients to provide prior explicit consent to share Additional Information through the Summary Care Record; and
  • Enabling GP Connect for all GP practices nationally (this will involve enabling GP Connect Access Record: HTML and Appointment Management functionality in respect of all GP surgeries and GP led hubs).

Sharing of your information can also include the clinical commissioning group and employing organisations (both member practices and third parties) where their staff work for primary care networks:

  1. Supporting communication measures between organisations to release hospital bed capacity;
  2. Allocating trained clinical staff such as pharmacists and administrative staff to further support GP practices with (a) electronic repeat dispensing whilst practice’s own staff are focused on providing care to COVID-19 patients, (b) switching prescribed drugs where suited to clinical needs, examples including switching from warfarin to Direct-acting oral anticoagulants (DOACs).
  3. Allocating other staff such as social prescribing link workers to further support GP practices in communicating with high risk patients who are to be shielded and are therefore self-isolating.