General Data Protection Regulation

What is GDPR

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is a law that determines how your personal data is processed and kept safe and the legal rights that you have in relation to your own data.

The regulation has applied since 25th of May 2018 and will apply after the UK leaves the EU.

The GDPR sets out the key principles about processing personal data, for staff or patients:

  • Data must be processed lawfully, fairly and transparently
  • It must be collected for specific, explicit and legitimate purposes
  • It must be limited to what is necessary for the purposes for which it is processed
  • Information must be accurate and kept up to date
  • Data must be held securely
  • It can only be retained for as long as is necessary for the reasons it was collected

There are also stronger rights for patients regarding the information that practices hold about them. These include:

  • Being informed about how their data is used
  • Patients to have access to their own data
  • Patients can ask to have incorrect information changed
  • Patients can restrict how their data is used
  • Patients can move their data from one health organisation to another
  • Patients have the right to object to their information being processed (in certain circumstances)

GDPR is a piece of legislation that superseded the Data Protection Act. It not only applies to the UK and EU; it covers anywhere in the world in which data about EU citizens is processed.

The GDPR is similar to the Data Protection Act (DPA) 2018 (which the practice already complies with), but strengthens many of the DPA’s principles. The main changes are:

  • Practices must comply with subject access requests
  • Where we need your consent to process data, this consent must be freely given, specific, informed and unambiguous
  • There are new, special protections for patient data
  • The Information Commissioner’s Office must be notified within 72 hours of a data breach
  • Higher fines for data breaches – up to 20 million euros

What is ‘patient data’?

Patient data is information that relates to a single person, such as name, age, address, mobile, his/her diagnosis, earlier medical history etc.

What is consent?

Consent is permission from a patient – an individual’s consent is defined as “any freely given specific and informed indication of his wishes by which the data subject signifies his agreement to personal data relating to him being processed.”

The changes in GDPR mean that we must get explicit permission from patients when using their data. This is to protect your right to privacy, and we may ask you to provide consent to do certain things, like contact you or record certain information about you for your clinical records.

Individuals also have the right to withdraw their consent at any time.

Fair Processing Notice for Patients

Your Information, Your Rights

Our Fair Processing Notice explains why we collect information about you and how that information may be used to deliver your direct care and manage the local health and social care system.

The notice reflects:

  • What information we collect about you;
  • How and why we use that information;
  • How we retain your information and keep it secure;
  • Who we share your information with and why we do this.

The notice also explains your rights in relation to consent to use your information, the right to control who can see your data and how to seek advice and support if you feel that your information has not been used appropriately.

For more information:

Contact us

Please address all queries regarding your data to our Data Protection Officer via; post, telephone or email.

St Marks Medical Centre
24 Wrottesley Road
Plumstead
London, SE18 3EP

Telephone: 0208 8546262
Email: GRECCG.Stmarks-patientgroup@nhs.net