Information sharing across Sunderland to support patient care

At the moment, every health organisation holds a different set of records about you. This information may be duplicated or incomplete.
Sunderland health and care information sharing is a confidential way of improving the care you receive by allowing a range of local services to share the information held electronically (on computer) about you in their records.  Healthcare staff have different levels of access depending on their role, ranging from full to partial access i.e. a Community Matron has different access to a Physiotherapist.
Your GP practice and South Tyneside Foundation Trust (which provides our local community healthcare services – like community nurses, specialist GP’s and physiotherapy services) work together to do this. In the future we hope to include more health and social care organisations to make the service even better.
Information is already shared by phone; email; fax and on paper but the new system allows this to happen quickly; efficiently and more securely, from one place, electronically.

More information

What kind of information will be shared?

  • List of diagnosed conditions – so professionals have a complete record of your care
  • Medications – so everyone treating you knows what medicines you’ve been prescribed
  • Allergies – to make sure you aren’t given medicine that might give you an adverse reaction
  • Test results – to speed up your treatment and care
  • Referrals, clinic letters and discharge information – to make sure the people caring for you have all the information they need about other treatment you’re having elsewhere.
  • Up-to-date contact details

What are the benefits of information sharing?

  • Joined-up and safer care
  • More time to spend on care
  • Less paperwork
  • Informed decision making
  • You don’t have to repeat details to different professionals.

Can anyone view my shared records?

Only health professionals directly involved in your care will see your health record. We won’t share it with anyone who isn’t providing your treatment, care or support. Your details won’t be made public, passed on to a third party or used for advertising.

How do I know my shared records are secure?

By law, everyone working in, or for, the NHS and social care must respect your privacy and keep your information safe. Information about your health is held on secure computer systems by the NHS. The system records anyone who looks at a person’s information, the time and date of access and the information they viewed. Data Protection is taken very seriously and we check that your information is only accessed by the people who need to see it.

Seeing my record or opting out from information sharing

If you want to see your records or opt out of local information sharing you can do this, but opting out of information sharing means that your GP cannot share your information with any other healthcare professional. This may have an impact on the level of care you receive.

If you want to see your records or opt out of local information sharing contact your GP practice.   They have a form they will ask you to sign.

This sharing is managed locally, joining up health across Sunderland.  There is also a national system called the Summary Care Record that health professionals can access a subset of information securely.  You can find out more on the NHS Choices website by clicking here. 

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