Using your information when you access the service
What information do you need from me?
When you phone NHS Direct Wales, you will be asked to provide some basic information about yourself and the reason for your call. The personal information needed includes your name, address, date of birth, telephone number and name of your General Practitioner (G.P).
What is it used for?
The information we ask for is used to provide you with appropriate healthcare advice.
We also need your information to:
- Create and maintain a personal health record
- Make sure we have the right caller when you contact the service again or if we need to call you back
- Help staff review the care they provide to ensure it is of the highest standard
- Teach and train staff
- Conduct health research and audit
- Plan service delivery across Wales where and when it is needed
- Ensure we have the information people in Wales are asking for
- Record and investigate complaints
With your consent, we may use the information to contact you regarding the care you have received.
NHS Direct Wales carries out patient experience surveys to make sure our callers receive the most appropriate advice, care and high quality service. Surveys are carried out over the telephone or by post and participation is voluntary.
How is my information kept?
Calls are recorded and stored securely within the computer systems of NHS Direct Wales.
Will my records be kept confidential?
All NHS staff have a legal and professional duty to keep information about you confidential.
At NHS Direct Wales, this includes information recorded during the call and the information documented on the computer system. Personal information held about you will be treated in confidence and will not be disclosed to a third party without your permission unless under certain circumstances. In general, these relate to serious criminal offences, the protection of children and vulnerable adults.
What if I do not wish to give any personal information?
You can decide how much information you give; you can even use NHS Direct Wales anonymously if you wish. Certain information will, of course, be needed for us to advise you appropriately.
Is there a law that governs the use of my information?
The Data Protection Act (1998), the Human Rights Act (1998) and the Freedom of Information Act (2000) are the laws which state that information about you can only be used in certain ways. The Data Protection Act states that information must be processed 'fairly and lawfully'. This means that you have a right to privacy, which is upheld through any use of your personal information by the NHS.
How is information used for training, audit and research?
To ensure NHS Direct Wales staff provide the best possible service to the people of Wales, spending time reviewing patients records and listening to calls is an essential element of staff training and development.
Information is required to carry out medical and other health research for the benefit of everyone. Only information which is not identifiable will be used for audit and research purposes and those accessing this information are bound by strict obligations of privacy and confidentiality. All NHS research is approved by a group of ethics experts before being carried out.
Can I have access to my records?
You have a right of access to the information we hold about you on our records. If anything is inaccurate or incorrect, please let us know and we will correct it.
If you want to see your health records then you should write to the Associate Director of Nursing at:
NHS Direct Wales
10 Phoenix Way