Under the Data Protection Act 1998, you have a right to know who holds personal information about you. This person or organisation is called the data controller. In the NHS, the data controller is usually your local NHS board and your GP surgery. The NHS must keep your personal health information confidential. It is your right.
What if I am under 16 ?
It explains that anyone who looks after your health has to keep information about you private. This may be doctors, nurses, pharmacists or other health workers.
The information tells you only about how things work in the health service, not other organisations such as your school or social services.
When you are young, your parents are usually involved in your health care. They may make decisions for you, and speak to health workers on your behalf. But as you get older you have more rights. You can decide if you want your parents to be involved or not.
- In Scotland if you are 12 or over, the law assumes you can make your own decisions about your health care information unless there is evidence to suggest you can’t.
- If you are under 12, you may still be able to make decisions about your health care information but the doctor must believe that you understand enough to do this.
- When we talk about parents, we also mean anyone who is your legal guardian.
- If you want to talk about your health in private, and you need an interpreter, ask our reception staff to arrange this for you.
- If you are over 12 years of age Practice staff are unable to provide confidential information to your parent or guardian unless you have given us written permission to do so.
For further information concerning Confidentiality and your rights please visit NHS Inform.