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Managing your information

As you may be aware,  New European “General Data Protection Rules’ came into effect on May 25th 2018, and this means that we need to explain a number of points to you in relation to your data.

When we receive a referral from your doctor, and subsequently interact with you in person, we create a healthcare record for you - A healthcare record refers to all information collected, processed and held both in manual and electronic formats pertaining to you and your care. It includes demographics (name, age, gender), unique identification number, clinical data, images, investigations, samples, correspondence and communications relating to the you and your care. We create this record in order to provide you with the best medical care possible. Prior to this change known as GDPR, your consent to do this was implicit, by the fact that you engaged with our service.  Now we need to be clearer about what data we keep on you, how we use it, how long we retain it, and with whom we share it. This explanatory leaflet refers specifically to the records we keep within our office at Dublin Gastroenterology and Endoscopy Group, which are separate from your hospital records.

Please read on for a description of these points:

1.    We will keeps a healthcare record on each patient, in each doctor’s practice, in an electronic practice management software package. In addition to the information listed above, your file will also include some financial records, for example – an invoice issued to you, or a receipt for a payment you have made. Your credit/debit card details or bank details are NEVER stored.
2.    The specific purpose of this healthcare record is to provide you with proper medical care. It will never be used for purposes such as marketing. On occasion, we might use certain aspects of your data for quality improvement measures within our practice, such as audit. You will never be identifiable in that circumstance.
3.    Our records will be kept accurate and up to date. The data protection laws state that data should be ‘adequate, relevant and limited to what is necessary’ – occasionally you may wonder about certain questions you have been asked during the course of history taking, which may seem irrelevant or intrusive (for example social habits, family dynamics), but this information is vital in building a full clinical picture. Feel free to ask for clarification if needed. This information is always confidential.
4.    Data (your healthcare record) will typically be kept for 8 years after your last interaction with your doctor, as recommended in the HSE guidelines. In certain circumstances, for example, an ongoing litigation case, your data may be kept for longer where clinically appropriate
5.    Confidentiality and Data security – whilst we have some historic paper files in our office, the majority of the healthcare records are now kept electronically. The information is stored securely within an electronic medical record, which is password protected. The data is backed up to the secure servers of the Mater Private Hospital. Paper files remain in locked filing cabinets, housed in our suite of offices which are locked when not in use.

6.    There are a number of scenarios in which we will share your data with a third party
a.    To return a report to your GP or referring doctor
b.    To refer you for a test or investigation in another department or hospital
c.    To refer you to another medical consultant or allied health professional for ongoing care
d.    For billing purposes, your data will be shared with our billing company, Medpro billing solutions. We do not send your full medical record, but only enough details to process the claim in question. Medpro is also legally bound by GDPR, and is committed to handing your data securely.
e.    Your data is also shared with your insurer in order to have your procedure reimbursed by them.  Again, we do not share your full medical record, but provide only the information required to allow the claim to be reimbursed. Occasionally, we might provide clinical details in advance of a procedure to obtain ‘pre-approval’ for that procedure.
7.    Under these new laws, you have a right to access to your data, and any request for this should be completed within 1 month. There are certain exceptions to this, for example where providing the medical record would cause a patient serious harm.
8.    You have the right to have an error in your record corrected. In certain circumstances, you have the right to have your record deleted. 
9.    You have a right to complain if your feel your data is not being handled correctly, and the contact person within the Dublin Gastroenterology Group is
10.    We will not use your personal data for any form of marketing. 

If you are agreeable to being contacted by text message ( for example – a reminder of an appointment). – please tick here

If you are agreeable to being contacted by email (for example – the instructions to follow for your procedure) – please tick here  

Please sign and date below to indicate you have read and understood this explanation, and that you give your consent for the use of your data as outlined above. 

Signature: _________________________________________

Date:          _________________________________________

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