Identify the legislation that relates to the recording, storage and sharing of information in health and social care |4184.108.40.206 | |Explain why it is important to have secure systems for recoding and storing information in a health and social care |4220.127.116.11 | |setting | | |Describe how to access guidance, information and advice about handling information |418.104.22.168 | |Explain what actions to take when there are concerns over the recording, storing or sharing of information |422.214.171.124
There are several pieces of legislation in the UK that are in place to protect the storing and the sharing of information held on a patient. The most prominent act in the UK is the Data Protection Act 1998. Any company or individual that is holding personal data for anything other than domestic use is legally required to comply with this act. It was enacted to protect people’s fundamental rights and freedoms with respect to how their personal data is handled and is seen as a way for people to control information about themselves.
There is also the Freedom of information Act in place so that members of the public can request information from public authorities and so that public authorities such as the NHS, public school and the police force are obliged to publish certain information about their activities. However, this act does not give people the right to access their own personal data; for this they should request under the Data Protection Act.
The Health and Social Care Act of 2008 also names one of its essential standards as record keeping. It states that patient’s personal records should be accurate, fit for purpose, held securely and always remain confidential in order to protect safety and wellbeing.
It is important that the healthcare provider maintains information security not only to comply with legislation, but because it is critical to how they run. The most important factor is to always maintain confidentiality for service users. All patients have the right to a confidential service, and under no circumstances should records be viewed by any unauthorised personnel. The basic information of a patient’s notes can also help to identify the patient, preventing fraud or identity theft. For this reason, the information in a patients notes should be accurately documented on each encounter with the patient so that it can be relied upon, and accessed quickly as needed to ensure the best care can be provided.
Information about information storage and handling can be obtained from colleagues, senior members of staff, the health provider’s policies and procedure guides as well as the internet and if an individual has concerns over how information about a patient was being shared, they should accurately document their findings and report it to a manager or senior member of staff.