Data Protection Privacy Notice for Patients

Balsall Common and Meriden Group Practice (the Practice) 



This privacy notice lets you know what happens to any personal data that you give to us, or any that we may collect from or about you.

This privacy notice applies to personal information processed by or on behalf of the practice.

This Notice explains

·         Who we are, how we use your information and our Data Protection Officer

·         What kinds of personal information about you do we process?

·         What are the legal grounds for our processing of your personal information (including when we share it with others)?

·         What should you do if your personal information changes?

·         For how long your personal information is retained by us?

·         What are your rights under data protection laws?


The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) became law on 24th May 2016. This is a single EU-wide regulation on the protection of confidential and sensitive information. It enters into force in the UK on the 25th May 2018, repealing the Data Protection Act (1998).


For the purpose of applicable data protection legislation (including but not limited to the General Data Protection Regulation (Regulation (EU) 2016/679) (the "GDPR"), and the Data Protection Act 2018 (currently in Bill format before Parliament) the practice responsible for your personal data is Balsall Common and Meriden Group Practice.

This Notice describes how we collect, use and process your personal data, and how, in doing so, we comply with our legal obligations to you. Your privacy is important to us, and we are committed to protecting and safeguarding your data privacy rights


How we use your information and the law.

Balsall Common and Meriden Group Practice will be what’s known as the ‘Controller’ of the personal data you provide to us.

We collect basic personal data about you which does not include any special types of information or location-based information.  This does however include name, address, contact details such as email and mobile number etc.

We will also collect sensitive confidential data known as “special category personal data”, in the form of health information, religious belief (if required in a healthcare setting) ethnicity, and sex during the services we provide to you and or linked to your healthcare through other health providers or third parties.


Why do we need your information?

The health care professionals who provide you with care maintain records about your health and any treatment or care you have received previously (e.g. NHS Trust, GP Surgery, Walk-in clinic, etc.). These records help to provide you with the best possible healthcare. 

NHS health records may be electronic, on paper or a mixture of both, and we use a combination of working practices and technology to ensure that your information is kept confidential and secure. Records which the Practice hold about you may include the following information; 

• Details about you, such as your address, carer, legal representative, emergency contact details

• Any contact the surgery has had with you, such as appointments, clinic visits, emergency appointments, etc.

• Notes and reports about your health

• Details about your treatment and care

• Results of investigations such as laboratory tests, x-rays etc

• Relevant information from other health professionals, relatives or those who care for you

To ensure you receive the best possible care, your records are used to facilitate the care you receive. Information held about you may be used to help protect the health of the public and to help us manage the NHS. Information may be used within the GP practice for clinical Audit to monitor the quality of the service provided.


How do we lawfully use your data?

We need to know your personal, sensitive and confidential data in order to provide you with Healthcare services as a General Practice, under the General Data Protection Regulation we will be lawfully using your information in accordance with: -

Article 6, e) processing is necessary for the performance of a task carried out in the public interest or in the exercise of official authority vested in the controller;”

Article 9, (h) processing is necessary for the purposes of preventive or occupational medicine, for the assessment of the working capacity of the employee, medical diagnosis, the provision of health or social care or treatment or the management of health or social care systems

This Privacy Notice applies to the personal data of our patients and the data you have given us about your carers/family members.


Risk Stratification 

Risk stratification data tools are increasingly being used in the NHS to help determine a person’s risk of suffering a condition, preventing an unplanned or (re)admission and identifying a need for preventive intervention. Information about you is collected from a number of sources including NHS Trusts and from this GP Practice. A risk score is then arrived at through an analysis of your de-identified information is only provided back to your GP as data controller in an identifiable form. Risk stratification enables your GP to focus on preventing ill health and not just the treatment of sickness. If necessary, your GP may be able to offer you additional services. Please note that you have the right to opt out of your data being used in this way.


Medicines Management

The Practice may conduct Medicines Management Reviews of medications prescribed to its patients. This service performs a review of prescribed medications to ensure patients receive the most appropriate, up to date and cost-effective treatments.



The Practice is dedicated to ensuring that the principles and duties of safeguarding adults and children are holistically, consistently and conscientiously applied with the wellbeing of all, at the heart of what we do. 

Our legal basis for processing For the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) purposes is: -

            Article 6(1)(e) ‘…exercise of official authority…’.

For the processing of special categories data, the basis is: -

Article 9(2)(b) – ‘processing is necessary for the purposes of carrying out the obligations and exercising specific rights of the controller or of the data subject in the field of employment and social security and social protection law…’


Categories of personal data

The data collected by Practice staff in the event of a safeguarding situation will be as much personal information as is necessary or possible to obtain in order to handle the situation. In addition to some basic demographic and contact details, we will also process details of what the safeguarding concern is. This is likely to be special category information (such as health information).

Sources of the data

The Practice will either receive or collect information when someone contacts the organisation with safeguarding concerns or we believe there may be safeguarding concerns and make enquiries to relevant providers.

Recipients of personal data

The information is used by the Practice when handling a safeguarding incident or concern. We may share information accordingly to ensure duty of care and investigation as required with other partners such as local authorities, the police or healthcare professionals (i.e. their GP or mental health team).


How do we maintain the confidentiality of your records? 

We are committed to protecting your privacy and will only use information collected lawfully in accordance with:

·         Data Protection Act 2018

·         The General Data Protection Regulations 2016

·         Human Rights Act 1998

·         Common Law Duty of Confidentiality

·         Health and Social Care Act 2012

·         NHS Codes of Confidentiality, Information Security and Records Management

·         Information: To Share or Not to Share Review 


Every member of staff who works for an NHS organisation has a legal obligation to keep information about you confidential. 

We will only ever use or pass on information about you if others involved in your care have a genuine need for it. We will not disclose your information to any third party without your permission unless there are exceptional circumstances (i.e. life or death situations), where the law requires information to be passed on and / or in accordance with the information sharing principle following Dame Fiona Caldicott’s information sharing review (Information to share or not to share) where “The duty to share information can be as important as the duty to protect patient confidentiality.” This means that health and social care professionals should have the confidence to share information in the best interests of their patients within the framework set out by the Caldicott principles.

Our practice policy is to respect the privacy of our patients, their families and our staff and to maintain compliance with the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) and all UK specific Data Protection Requirements. Our policy is to ensure all personal data related to our patients will be protected.


All employees and sub-contractors engaged by our practice are asked to sign a confidentiality agreement. The practice will, if required, sign a separate confidentiality agreement if the client deems it necessary.  If a sub-contractor acts as a data processor for [Practice Name] an appropriate contract (art 24-28) will be established for the processing of your information.


In Certain circumstances you may have the right to withdraw your consent to the processing of data. Please contact the Data Protection Officer in writing if you wish to withdraw your consent.  If some circumstances we may need to store your data after your consent has been withdrawn to comply with a legislative requirement.

Some of this information will be held centrally and used for statistical purposes. Where we do this, we take strict measures to ensure that individual patients cannot be identified. Sometimes your information may be requested to be used for research purposes – the surgery will always gain your consent before releasing the information for this purpose in an identifiable format.   In some circumstances you can Opt-out of the surgery sharing any of your information for research purposes.


With your consent we would also like to use your information to

We would however like to use your name, contact details and email address to inform you of services that may benefit you, with your consent only.  There may be occasions were authorised research facilities would like you to take part on innovations, research, improving services or identifying trends.

At any stage where we would like to use your data for anything other than the specified purposes and where there is no lawful requirement for us to share or process your data, we will ensure that you have the ability to consent and opt out prior to any data processing taking place.
This information is not shared with third parties or used for any marketing and you can unsubscribe at any time via phone, email or by informing the practice DPO as below.

Where do we store your information Electronically?

All the personal data we process is processed by our staff in the UK however for the purposes of IT hosting and maintenance this information may be located on servers within the European Union.

No 3rd parties have access to your personal data unless the law allows them to do so and appropriate safeguards have been put in place.  We have a Data Protection regime in place to oversee the effective and secure processing of your personal and or special category (sensitive, confidential) data.

Who are our partner organisations?

We may also have to share your information, subject to strict agreements on how it will be used, with the following organisations;

       NHS Trusts / Foundation Trusts


       NHS Commissioning Support Units

       Independent Contractors such as dentists, opticians, pharmacists

       Private Sector Providers

       Voluntary Sector Providers

       Ambulance Trusts

       Clinical Commissioning Groups

       Social Care Services

       NHS England (NHSE) and NHS Digital (NHSD)

       Multi Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH)

       Local Authorities

       Education Services

       Fire and Rescue Services

       Police & Judicial Services

       Voluntary Sector Providers

       Private Sector Providers

       Other ‘data processors’ which you will be informed of


You will be informed who your data will be shared with and in some cases asked for consent for this to happen when this is required.


Computer System This practice operates a Clinical Computer System on which NHS Staff record information securely.  This information can then be shared with other clinicians so that everyone caring for you is fully informed about your medical history, including allergies and medication.


To provide around the clock safe care, unless you have asked us not to, we will make information available to trusted organisations.  Wherever possible, their staff will ask your consent before your information is viewed.

 We consider patient consent as being the key factor in dealing with your health information.


Shared Care Records

To support your care and improve the sharing of relevant information to our partner organisations when they are involved in looking after you, we will share information to other systems.  The general principle is that information is passed to these systems unless you request this does not happen, but that system users should ask for your consent before viewing your record.  

We may also use external companies to process personal information, such as for archiving purposes. These companies are bound by contractual agreements to ensure information is kept confidential and secure.  All employees and sub-contractors engaged by our practice are asked to sign a confidentiality agreement. If a sub-contractor acts as a data processor for [Practice Name] an appropriate contract (art 24-28) will be established for the processing of your information.


Sharing your information without consent

We will normally ask you for your consent, but there are times when we may be required by law to share your information without your consent, for example:

·         where there is a serious risk of harm or abuse to you or other people;

·         where a serious crime, such as assault, is being investigated or where it could be prevented;

·         notification of new births;

·         where we encounter infectious diseases that may endanger the safety of others, such as Meningitis or measles (but not HIV/AIDS);

·         where a formal court order has been issued;

·         where there is a legal requirement, for example if you had committed a Road Traffic Offence.


How long will we store your information?

We are required under UK law to keep your information and data for the full retention periods as specified by the NHS Records management code of practice for health and social care and national archives requirements.

More information on records retention can be found online at (https://digital.nhs.uk/article/1202/Records-Management-Code-of-Practice-for-Health-and-Social-Care-2016)


How can you access, amend move the personal data that you have given to us?

Even if we already hold your personal data, you still have various rights in relation to it. To get in touch about these, please contact us. We will seek to deal with your request without undue delay, and in any event in accordance with the requirements of any applicable laws. Please note that we may keep a record of your communications to help us resolve any issues which you raise.

Right to object: If we are using your data because we deem it necessary for our legitimate interests to do so, and you do not agree, you have the right to object. We will respond to your request within 30 days (although we may be allowed to extend this period in certain cases). Generally, we will only disagree with you if certain limited conditions apply.

Right to withdraw consent: Where we have obtained your consent to process your personal data for certain activities (for example for a research project), or consent to market to you, you may withdraw your consent at any time.

Right to erasure: In certain situations (for example, where we have processed your data unlawfully), you have the right to request us to "erase" your personal data. We will respond to your request within 30 days (although we may be allowed to extend this period in certain cases) and will only disagree with you if certain limited conditions apply. If we do agree to your request, we will Delete your data but will generally assume that you would prefer us to keep a note of your name on our register of individuals who would prefer not to be contacted. That way, we will minimise the chances of you being contacted in the future where your data are collected in unconnected circumstances. If you would prefer us not to do this, you are free to say so.

Right of data portability: If you wish, you have the right to transfer your data from us to another data controller. We will help with this with a GP to GP data transfer and transfer of your hard copy notes.




Access to your personal information 

Data Subject Access Requests (DSAR): You have a right under the Data Protection legislation to request access to view or to obtain copies of what information the surgery holds about you and to have it amended should it be inaccurate. To request this, you need to do the following:

• Your request should be made to the Practice – for information from the hospital you should write direct to them

• There is no charge to have a copy of the information held about you

• We are required to respond to you within one month 

• You will need to give adequate information (for example full name, address, date of birth, NHS number and details of your request) so that your identity can be verified, and your records located information we hold about you at any time.

 Subject Access Request Policy - Please click on policy below for information

Subject Access Request Policy 0519.doc

What should you do if your personal information changes?

You should tell us so that we can update our records please contact the Practice Manager as soon as any of your details change, this is especially important for changes of address or contact details (such as your mobile phone number), the practice will from time to time ask you to confirm that the information we currently hold is accurate and up-to-date.


Objections / Complaints

Should you have any concerns about how your information is managed at the GP, please contact the GP Practice Manager or the Data Protection Officer as above. If you are still unhappy following a review by the GP practice, you have a right to lodge a complaint with a supervisory authority: You have a right to complain to the UK supervisory Authority as below.


Information Commissioner:

Wycliffe house

Water Lane





Tel:       01625 545745



If you are happy for your data to be extracted and used for the purposes described in this privacy notice, then you do not need to do anything.  If you have any concerns about how your data is shared, then please contact the Practice Data Protection Officer. 

If you would like to know more about your rights in respect of the personal data we hold about you, please contact the Data Protection Officer as below.


Data Protection Officer:


The Practice Data Protection Officer is Paul Couldrey of PCIG Consulting Limited. Any queries regarding Data Protection issues should be addressed to him at: -


Email:   Couldrey@me.com

Postal: PCIG Consulting Limited

                        7 Westacre Drive

                        Quarry Bank


                        West Midlands

                        DY5 2EE




It is important to point out that we may amend this Privacy Notice from time to time.  If you are dissatisfied with any aspect of our Privacy Notice, please contact the Practice Data Protection Officer.




Please cancel appointments which are no longer needed; arrive on time for your appointment; book one appointment for each person.

Please treat our staff with courtesy and respect.

Please notify us if you change your name, address or contact numbers.

The practice will provide any inquiries and examinations as appear to be appropriate for any patients who have not been seen at the practice in the previous three years when they attend surgery.



If you have any comments or complaints concerning the service you receive from the practice, please contact Mrs Hope, the practice manager, in writing or telephone 01676 935000.



We ask you for personal information so that you can receive appropriate care and treatment. This information is recorded on computer. We are registered under the Data Protection Act, under which you have statutory rights. The practice will ensure that patient confidentiality is maintained at all times by all members of the practice team. However, for the effective functioning of a multi-disciplinary team it is sometimes necessary for medical information about a patient to be shared between members of the team. Details of how the practice shares information is included in the practice Freedom of Information Publication Scheme available from the practice manager.



How we use your medical records - Important information for patients 

·       This practice handles medical records in-line with laws on data protection and confidentiality.

·       We share medical records with those who are involved in providing you with care and treatment.

·       We share information when the law requires us to do so, for example, to prevent infectious diseases from spreading or to check the care being provided to you is safe.

·       You have the right to be given a copy of your medical record.

·       You have the right to object to your medical records being shared with those who provide you with care.

·       You have the right to object to your information being used for medical research and to plan health services.

·       You have the right to have any mistakes corrected and to complain to the Information Commissioner’s Office.


Please see the practice privacy notice on the website or speak to a member of staff for more information about your rights.


If you have any questions, our data controller is Joanne Hope who is also our Practice Manager

You can decide to opt out of sharing your data for NHS research and planning purposes. If you decide to opt out, this will be respected and upheld by NHS Digital at first. NHS Digital collects, processes and releases health and social care data on a national basis. Your decision will also be respected and upheld by all other organisations that use health and care information by March 2020.




From time to time it is possible that your records may be assessed by, for example, members of Solihull Primary Care Trust or members or members of staff working for the Trust. These members of staff (who will all have signed a duty of confidentiality) are required to review the quality and consistency of patient records in monitoring the management of healthcare services in the NHS.

Wherever it is practicable, patient information will be anonymised and/or aggregated.

If this is not possible and patient identifiable information is disclosed, a note of this will be made in your records.

If you have any questions or comments about the confidentiality of patient records, or if you would prefer that your records are not accessed for these purposes, please contact the Practice Manager, Mrs Joanne Hope.

Reference: Department of Health Code of Practice, 'Confidentiality and Disclosure of Information: General Medical Services (GMS) Personal Medical Services (PMS), and Alternative Medical Services (APMS) Code of Practice March 2005'. A copy of this document can be obtained from the Practice Manager, Mrs Joanne Hope.


The Balsall Common and Meriden Group Practice are participating in the Summary Care Record Programme.  A Summary Care Record is a summary of important information about your health which can be accessed via NHS computers by NHS staff only.  This programme offers a real chance to improve patient safety and clinical care while providing important safeguards about consent and confidentiality.  It means that if you have an Accident or become ill, Healthcare staff will be able to immediately access vital health information about you to help provide you with the best possible care.

The only medical information included on the Summary Care Record at the moment is allergies, repeat prescriptions and previous reactions to medicines

 This information is particularly helpful in the following situations

·         If you attend an Out Of Hours Centre, Walk-In Centre or Accident & Emergency

·        If you are a temporary patient from another practice and do not have a clinical record on their GP system

·        In an emergency situation where the patient is unconscious

 In the future the following information may also be added

·         Significant Illnesses and Health Problems

·        Illnesses that you take regular medication for, such as Asthma and Diabetes

·        Important test results and Immunisations

 If there is any information that you do NOT want to be included in your Summary Care Record, you must let your GP Practice know

Please note that staff accessing your Summary Care Record must do so with your prior consent on each occasion, so even though you may have a Summary Care Record a member of staff will not be able to view it until they have received your verbal consent.

If however you choose not to have a Summary Care Record, we will need this in writing.  An Opt out form should be completed (for children – the parent will need to complete this on their behalf). Opt Out Forms are available from Reception at both surgeries.

If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact the Practice.  Additional information can also be found on the following website.


 or by telephoning 0845 603 8510 (7.00am – 10.00pm – Every day except Bank Holidays)

If you decide at a later date that you Do wish to have a Summary Care Record please contact the surgery to complete a Summary Care Record OPT IN Form



We try to make sure that as a practice we are aware of any patient who needs to be supported by a friend or relative. We would also like to know who is caring for the patient so that we can also support them as well. Sometimes when people are looking after someone they can get tired or frustrated and could be comforted by the knowledge that there is someone outside the family who might understand how they are feeling and be able to offer help. It is therefore important that our doctors and nurses know which patients can be classed main Carer and who they care for. We can then ensure that support from the practice is made available when necessary. So if you are cared for, or are yourself a carer, please ask at reception for a carers leaflet.



A zero tolerance policy towards violent, threatening and abusive behaviour is now in place throughout the National Health Service. 

The staff in this practice have the right to do their work in an environment free from such behaviour and everything will be done to protect that right. 
At no time will any violent, threatening or abusive behaviour be tolerated in this practice. If you do not respect the rights of our staff we may choose to inform the police and make arrangements for you to be removed from our medical list.




The Freedom of Information Act 2000 obliges the practice to produce a Publication Scheme. A Publication Scheme is a guide to the 'classes' of information the practice intends to routinely make available.

This scheme is available from reception.



Everyone belongs to an ethnic group so all our patients and service users are being asked to describe their ethnic group.  We are collecting this information to help the Practice and NHS Community Services to:

·        Understand the needs of patient and service users from different groups and so provide better and more appropriate services for you.

·        Identify Risk Factors - some groups are more at risk of specific diseases and care needs so ethnic data can help treat patients and support service users by alerting staff to high-risk groups

·        Improve public health by making sure that our services are reaching all of our local communities and that we are delivering our services fairly to everyone who needs them.

·        Comply the law as the Race Relations (Amendment) Act 2000 gives public authorities a duty to promote race equality and good race relations and ethnic monitoring is important in making sure that race discrimination is not taking place.

You do not have to disclose your ethnicity but providing the information is very important.  It will help us with diagnosis and assessment of your needs, and it will also help us plan and improve our service.  Experience shows that when people are asked their ethnic group, the proportion of people who choose not to answer is small.

The information you provide will be treated as part of our confidential NHS or care notes and will not be shared with any other organisation.  The NHS has strict standards regarding data protection and your information will be carefully safeguarded.


As a patient you have the right to: a) be registered with a doctor b) See a doctor in an emergency c) receive emergency care d) receive appropriate drugs and medicines e) be referred for specialist or second opinion if your doctor agrees f) see your medical records or a copy, subject to certain laws g) know that by law, everyone working for the NHS must keep the contents of your medical records private. With this right come responsibilities for the public. That means being: a) courteous to staff at all times b) as prompt as possible for all appointments (Please note that if you arrive late for an appointment it is at the doctors discretion whether you will be seen or whether you are required to make another appointment) c) responsible for cancelling appointments in adequate time.

Only surgery staff have access to your medical records. All staff are trained regarding patient confidentiality. Other outside agencies may request access to your medical records but firstly we MUST receive your written permission.
We ask for personal information so that you can receive appropriate care and treatment. This information is recorded on computer. We are registered under the Data Protection Act, under which you have statutory rights. The practice will ensure patient confidentiality is maintained at all times by all members of the practice team. However, for the effective functioning of a multi-disciplinary team it is sometimes necessary for medical information about a patient to be shared between members of a team. details of how the practice shares information is included in the practice Freedom of Information Publication Scheme available from the Practice Manager

A Zero Tolerance Policy towards violent, threatening or abusive behaviour is now in place throughout the National Health Service.

The staff in this practice have the right to do their work in an environment free from such behaviour and everything will be done to protect that right. At no time will any violent, threatening or abusive behaviour be tolerated in this practice. If you do not respect the rights of our staff we may choose to inform the police and make arrangements for you to be removed from our practice list.

Please notify the practice immediately if you change your address, name or telephone number, this will ensure that your records with us are always up to date.

Nurses based at our practice treat patients for a wide range of common conditions (e.g. minor injuries/illnesses, removing stitches, travel vaccinations, immunisations and so on). You can expect to see a nurse within one working day. Our practice nurses are also specially trained to run routine clinics for certain conditions, such as diabetes and heart disease. (Each of our nurses specialises in a different area, so you need to book ahead with the most appropriate person). Our reception staff will be able to advise whether a nurse appointment is appropriate.

Our nurses have been specially trained to undertake healthcare monitoring for patients with long-term conditions. If patients see our nurses for routine healthcare needs or for straightforward medical help it means that our doctors have more time to see patients with more complex healthcare needs. It also means that our GPs have more time to undertake procedures, such as minor surgery, that used to be done only in hospital. The reception staff can generally advise whether an early appointment with the nurse will be satisfactory for your particular health problem. However, you do not have to inform the reception staff if you prefer to wait for an appointment with a GP.

We work closely with other healthcare professionals who are part of our Primary Health Care Team working in the community, such as the district nursing team, midwives and health visitors. These services are provided by the Bsol Community Care Group and are based (at the surgery/other location). By contacting the surgery with your requirements we are then able to relay messages back to these Health Care Professionals. If you have an illness or incapacity that means that you need nursing care in your own home, the district nursing team, will visit you. Patients who are likely to benefit from this service include the housebound, the elderly, people with a terminal illness, and those who have recently been discharged from hospital. District nurses provide wound care, palliative care, continence advice, health promotion advice and advice on co-ordinating care packages. If you move permanently into a care home locally, the district nurse may be able to continue your care. Your GP may also be willing to continue to care for you, or a number of GPs may provide services for the residents of local care homes.

We always welcome comments and suggestions from our patients. If you wish to share your views with the practice, please write to Mrs Joanne Hope, Practice Manager, Balsall Common Health Centre, 1 Ashley Drive, Balsall Common, Coventry, CV7 7RW



As we are a training practice we occasionally have medical students sitting in on GP consultations. You will be notified by the Receptionist if a medical student is present and you have the right to refuse this.

We also have GP registrars holding clinics at the surgery. GP Registrars are usually with us for 6 or 12 months.  They hold appointments and are overseen by GP Trainers at the Practice (Dr M S Bhandal and Dr T Nadeem)

Balsall Common Surgery - Balsall Common Health Centre, 1 Ashley Drive, Balsall Common, Coventry, West Midlands, CV7 7RW
Meriden Surgery - Old School House, 200 Main Road, Meriden, CV7 7NG
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