Safety Concerns Regarding Prospective Access to GP Electronic Health Records

Posted by: jessicahelyer - Posted on:

Patients may be aware of the current move by NHS England on “accelerating citizen access to GP data” which has caused the GP Practice significant concerns due to factual, contractual, technical, legal, financial, clinical, ethical and patient issues which could lead to potential or real harm for patient care.  In addition, this could put more pressure on General Practice and the wider NHS.  In order to ensure prospective access is granted with adequate safeguards in place we have chosen to delay this for the time being. As a Practice we feel it is not safe to grant online access to all patients at this time.

Please note this will not affect the 3062 patients who already have online access, many of whom have access to their full medical records.  As a Practice we have worked tirelessly ahead of the current imposed changes to grant access to your patient record.  Patients can still apply for online access using the existing process already in place. This will enable us to undertake appropriate due diligence for those who would like access to their full medical records.

We have a robust process if patients would like to apply for full access. They sign a disclaimer outlining that they may see information that we have not yet had the opportunity to communicate to them etc.  By using our former method, we believe we safely encourage a partnership of trust between health and patients. 

We are following guidance regarding prospective access being automatically switched on rather than through processes we have in place at a practice level.  This guidance has been provided via sources such as the British Medical Association and when we have further information, we will keep our website up to date.

Dr Amir Hanan who is considered a leader on patient access to records and friend of the practice spoke recently about this and you can hear what he had to say about this Radio 4 Inside Health: GP records, Serotonin and how we get cancer.  There is also emerging evidence being published in British General Practice Journal which makes for an interesting read.

For more information and how to apply for online access, please see: