How we use Your Information

How Data in Your GP Record is Used and How you can Control the use (opt-out)

As a practice, we fully respect your right as a patient to control your data. We outline our privacy policy in more detail on this page and explain how we share data with other providers, including the Great North Care Record and NHS Digital for secondary use.

You have the right to opt-out at any time from data being shared.

Your data is used in broadly two different ways:

1. To provide you with care. This is called “Primary Use“

2. To allow for planning and research to be done. This is called “Secondary Use“

Both uses will only be made where it is considered secure and appropriate to use patient data.

Opting-out of data sharing is an option for all patients, however it is not without potential downsides. For Primary Use data, if you opt-out and need care in a local hospital, for example, it may be much harder for the staff to access important medical information about you needed to provide safe and effective care. For Secondary Use, the downsides are more indirect. If everyone in the country were to opt-out, it would make it much harder to ensure funding is used in the NHS to develop services where they are needed.

It would also be harder to develop new treatments.

It is possible to opt-out of specific parts of data sharing, while keeping some elements of data sharing in place. It is very common, for example, for people who have privacy concerns about Secondary Use, to be happy to continue sharing data for Primary Use/Direct Care.

The below table summarises what opt-outs are possible, and how to request them:

opt table

How Data in your GP Record is Used, and How you Can Control the use

Primary Use – sharing your data for your direct care

Who it is shared with:  Summary Care Record & Great North Care Record

How it is used:  These are used by NHS hospitals and other providers (e.g. midwives) to ensure they have the data needed to provide you with the right care.

How to opt out:  Opt out through your GP practice – contact the surgery reception to speak to the practice manager/deputy practice manager to discuss this and we will be able to apply the opt-out.

Secondary Use – Using your data to design health services and do health research

Who it is shared with: Local NHS Organisations (such as Clinical Commissioning Groups), NHS Digital & External research organisation

How is it used:  Using data to plan how to design local services around the needs of the population, Using data to plan and design national services around the needs of the population, Using data for various research purposes.

How to opt out:  Use a ‘type-1 opt out’ – Please send this form to the practice by emailing to [email protected]
Use the National Data Opt-out – Visit the NHS website, use the NHS App or call 0300 3035678

How to Manage Your Sharing Preferences Using the NHS App

You can view or change your current preference at any time.

To view and change your preference in the NHS App:

1. Go to Your health

2. Select Choose if data from your health and care records is shared for planning and research.

3. Select Make your choice.

4. Review the information on the page, then select Start now.

5. View your preference, then select Change if you want to change it.

6. Update your choice, then select Submit. You can also visit


This practice keeps medical records confidential and complies with the General Data Protection Regulation.
We hold your medical record so that we can provide you with safe care and treatment.

We will also use your information so that this practice can check and review the quality of the care we provide. This helps us to improve our services to you.
For more information please click on the link below:


This practice keeps data on you relating to who you are, where you live, what you do, your family, possibly your friends, your employers, your habits, your problems and diagnoses, the reasons you seek help, your appointments, where you are seen and when you are seen, who by, referrals to specialists and other healthcare providers, tests carried out here and in other places, investigations and scans, treatments and outcomes of treatments, your treatment history, the observations and opinions of other healthcare workers, within and without the NHS as well as comments and aide memoires reasonably made by healthcare professionals in this practice who are appropriately involved in your health care.

When registering for NHS care, all patients who receive NHS care are registered on a national database, the database is held by NHS Digital, a national organisation which has legal responsibilities to collect NHS data.

GPs have always delegated tasks and responsibilities to others that work with them in their surgeries, on average an NHS GP has between 1,500 to 2,500 patients for whom he or she is accountable.

It is not possible for the GP to provide hands on personal care for each and every one of those patients in those circumstances, for this reason GPs share your care with others, predominantly within the surgery but occasionally with outside organisations.

If your health needs require care from others elsewhere outside this practice we will exchange with them whatever information about you that is necessary for them to provide that care. When you make contact with healthcare providers outside the practice but within the NHS it is usual for them to send us information relating to that encounter.

We will retain part or all of those reports. Normally we will receive equivalent reports of contacts you have with non NHS services but this is not always the case.

Your consent to this sharing of data, within the practice and with those others outside the practice is allowed by the Law.

People who have access to your information will only normally have access to that which they need to fulfil their roles, for instance admin staff will normally only see your name, address, contact details, appointment history and registration details in order to book appointments, the practice nurses will normally have access to your immunisation, treatment, significant active and important past histories, your allergies and relevant recent contacts whilst the GP you see or speak to will normally have access to everything in your record.

HYLTON MEDICAL GROUP is one of many organisations working in the health and care system to improve care for patients and the public.

Whenever you use a health or care service, such as attending the Practice, Accident & Emergency or using Community Care services, important information about you is collected to help ensure you get the best possible care and treatment and to ensure that the standards of service provided are of the highest quality.

Your data may be used to contact you about your experiences of using such services via surveys and questionnaires.

The information collected about you when you use these services can also be used and provided to other organisations for purposes beyond your individual care, for instance to help with:

  • improving the quality and standards of care provided
  • research into the development of new treatments
  • preventing illness and diseases
  • monitoring safety
  • planning services

This may only take place when there is a clear legal basis to use this information. All these uses help to provide better health and care for you, your family and future generations. Confidential patient information about your health and care is only used like this where allowed by law.

Most of the time, anonymised data is used for research and planning so that you cannot be identified in which case your confidential patient information isn’t needed.

You have a choice about whether you want your confidential patient information to be used in this way. If you are happy with this use of information you do not need to do anything. If you do choose to opt out your confidential patient information will still be used to support your individual care.

To find out more or to register your choice to opt out, please visit  On this web page you will:

  • See what is meant by confidential patient information
  • Find examples of when confidential patient information is used for individual care and examples of when it is used for purposes beyond individual care
  • Find out more about the benefits of sharing data
  • Understand more about who uses the data
  • Find out how your data is protected
  • Be able to access the system to view, set or change your opt-out setting
  • Find the contact telephone number if you want to know any more or to set/change your opt-out by phone
  • See the situations where the opt-out will not apply

You can also find out more about how patient information is used at: (which covers health and care research); and (which covers how and why patient information is used, the safeguards and how decisions are made)

You can change your mind about your choice at any time.

Data being used or shared for purposes beyond individual care does not include your data being shared with insurance companies or used for marketing purposes and data would only be used in this way with your specific agreement.

Health and care organisations have until 2020 to put systems and processes in place so they can be compliant with the national data opt-out and apply your choice to any confidential patient information they use or share for purposes beyond your individual care. Our organisation ‘is currently’ compliant with the national data opt-out policy.

You have the right to object to our sharing your data in these circumstances but we have an overriding responsibility to do what is in your best interests. Please see below.

We are required by Articles in the General Data Protection Regulations to provide you with the information in the following 9 subsections.

What we hold about you: We hold the following types of information about you:·       Basic details about you, such as your name, date of birth, NHS Number

  • Contact details such as your address, telephone numbers, email address
  • Contact details of your ‘Next of Kin’, a close relative, friend or advocate
  • Contacts we have had with you; scheduled and unscheduled appointments
  • Details about your care; treatment and advice given and referrals made
  • Results of investigations, eg blood tests
  • Relevant information from people who care for you and know you well
1) Data Controller contact details


Dr BGO Al-Khalidi
Kelly Hardy Practice Manager
2) Data Protection Officer contact details


James Carroll 0191 404 1000 Ext 3436

[email protected]

3) Purpose of the  processing Direct Care is care delivered to the individual alone, most of which is provided in the surgery.

After a patient agrees to a referral for direct care elsewhere, such as a referral to a specialist in a hospital, necessary and relevant information about the patient, their circumstances and their problem will need to be shared with the other healthcare workers, such as specialist, therapists, technicians etc.

The information that is shared is to enable the other healthcare workers to provide the most appropriate advice, investigations, treatments, therapies and or care.

4) Lawful basis for processing The processing of personal data in the delivery of direct care and for providers’ administrative purposes in this surgery and in support of direct care elsewhere  is supported under the following Article 6 and 9 conditions of the GDPR:

Article 6(1) (e) ‘…necessary for the performance of a task carried out in the public interest or in the exercise of official authority…’

Article 9(2) (h) ‘…necessary for the purposes of preventative or occupational medicine for the assessment of the working capacity of the employee, medical diagnosis, the provision of health or social care or treatment or the management of health or social care systems and services…’ 

We will also recognise your rights established under UK case law collectively known as the “Common Law Duty of Confidentiality”*


5) Recipient or categories of recipients of the processed data The data will be shared with Health and care professionals and support staff in this surgery and at hospitals, diagnostic and treatment centres who contribute to your personal care. For example:Sunderland Royal Hospital

Queen Elizabeth Hospital

Royal Victoria Infirmary

Freeman Hospital

James Cook Hospital

All other Clinics used for the purpose of a referral to Secondary Care

6) Rights to object You have the right to object to some or all the information being processed under Article 21. Please contact the Data Controller or the practice.

You should be aware that this is a right to raise an objection; that is not the same as having an absolute right to have your wishes granted in every circumstance.

7) Right to access and correct You have the right to access the data that is being shared and have any inaccuracies corrected. There is no right to have accurate medical records deleted except when ordered by a court of Law.
8) Retention period The data will be retained in line with the law and national guidance. speak to the Practice.


9) Right to Complain You have the right to complain to the Information Commissioner’s Office, you can use this link

or calling their helpline Tel: 0303 123 1113 (local rate) or 01625 545 745 (national rate)

There are National Offices for Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales, (see ICO website)


* “Common Law Duty of Confidentiality”, common law is not written out in one document like an Act of Parliament. It is a form of law based on previous court cases decided by judges; hence, it is also referred to as ‘judge-made’ or case law. The law is applied by reference to those previous cases, so common law is also said to be based on precedent.

The general position is that if information is given in circumstances where it is expected that a duty of confidence applies, that information cannot normally be disclosed without the information provider’s consent.

In practice, this means that all patient information, whether held on paper, computer, visually or audio recorded, or held in the memory of the professional, must not normally be disclosed without the consent of the patient. It is irrelevant how old the patient is or what the state of their mental health is; the duty still applies.

Three circumstances making disclosure of confidential information lawful are:

  • where the individual to whom the information relates has consented;
  • where disclosure is in the public interest; and
  • where there is a legal duty to do so, for example a court order.

This practice keeps medical records confidential and complies with the General Data Protection Regulation.
We hold your medical record so that we can provide you with safe care and treatment.
We will also use your information so that this practice can check and review the quality of the care we provide. This helps us to improve our services to you.

  • We will share relevant information from your medical record with other health or social care staff or organisations when they provide you with care. For example, your GP will share information when they refer you to a specialist in a hospital. Or your GP will send details about your prescription to your chosen pharmacy.

More information on how we share your information with organisations who are directly involved in your care can be found here: Summary Care Record, Care.Data Research, Electronic Data Sharing Model EDSM.

What is a Summary Care Record?

A Summary Care Record is a brief electronic (computerized) summary which contains information about the medication you take, allergies you suffer from and any adverse reaction to medications you may have.

This information is shared with emergency services such as A&E or the Out of Hours GP services so that

they may treat you safely but does not give emergency services full access to your medical records.

What is Care.Data Research?

The NHS continually gathers data in order to evaluate health and social care services to ensure that the

best and most appropriate healthcare services are properly funded, and will aim to improve health and

social care services. How does the NHS do this?- the NHS will automatically download information from EMIS WEB about diseases such as diabetes, from medical records but this is controlled by laws and strict confidentiality rules. The kind of information used may include your date of birth, postcode and NHS number but your name would not be included.

What is the Electronic Data Sharing Model (EDSM)?

Patients now have a choice about how GP practices share their full electronic medical records. This means patients can choose who can see their information. You therefore have two choices to make:
1. SHARING OUT– If you are sharing out then you agree to have your full medical record shared with other NHS healthcare professionals who are treating you, e.g. district nurses. The standard setting for your medical records WILL NOT be shared out.

  1. SHARING IN– If you are sharing in then you agree to share your medical information with your GP from NHS healthcare professionals who are treating you outside of the surgery. Involving your GP in your care outside of the practice will ensure that your GP is kept up-to-date and that you maintain continuity of care. The standard setting WILL be shared in so that your GP can view all the treatment you receive.
  • Healthcare staff working in A&E and out of hours care will also have access to your information. For example, it is important that staff who are treating you in an emergency know if you have any allergic reactions. This will involve the use of your Summary Care Record OR Emergency Care Summary / Individual Health Record. For more information see: or alternatively speak to your practice.
  • You have the right to object to information being shared for your own care. Please speak to the practice if you wish to object. You also have the right to have any mistakes or errors corrected.

Other important information about how your information is used to provide you with healthcare

Registering for NHS care

All patients who receive NHS care are registered on a national database.

This database holds your name, address, date of birth and NHS Number but it does not hold information about the care you receive.

The database is held by NHS Digital, NHS England Information Services, Business Services Organisation, national organisations which has legal responsibilities to collect NHS data.

More information can be found at: the phone number for general enquiries at NHS Digital is 0300 303 5678


Identifying patients who might be at risk of certain diseases

 Your medical records will be searched by a computer programme so that we can identify patients who might be at high risk from certain diseases such as heart disease or unplanned admissions to hospital.

This means we can offer patients additional care or support as early as possible.

This process will involve linking information from your GP record with information from other health or social care services you have used.

Information which identifies you will only be seen by this practice.More information can be found at: or speak to the practice.



  • Sometimes we need to share information so that other people, including healthcare staff, children or others with safeguarding needs, are protected from risk of harm.
  • These circumstances are rare.
  • We do not need your consent or agreement to do this.
  • Please see our local policies for more information:

We are required by law to provide you with the following information about how we handle your information.

Data Protection Officer contact details JIM CARROLL @ SUNDERLAND CCG01915128484
Purpose of the processing
  • To give direct health or social care to individual patients.
  • For example, when a patient agrees to a referral for direct care, such as to a hospital, relevant information about the patient will be shared with the other healthcare staff to enable them to give appropriate advice, investigations, treatments and/or care.
  • To check and review the quality of care. (This is called audit and clinical governance).
Lawful basis for processing These purposes are supported under the following sections of the GDPR: Article 6(1)(e) ‘…necessary for the performance of a task carried out in the public interest or in the exercise of official authority…’; and

 Article 9(2)(h) ‘necessary for the purposes of preventative or occupational medicine for the assessment of the working capacity of the employee, medical diagnosis, the provision of health or social care or treatment or the management of health or social care systems and services…” 

Healthcare staff will also respect and comply with their obligations under the common law duty of confidence.

Recipient or categories of recipients of the processed data The data will be shared with:

  • healthcare professionals and staff in this surgery;
  • NHS Trusts / Foundation Trusts
  • GP’s
  • NHS Commissioning Support Units
  • Independent Contractors such as dentists, opticians, pharmacists
  • Private Sector Providers
  • Voluntary Sector Providers
  • Ambulance Trusts
  • Clinical Commissioning Groups
  • Social Care Services
  • Health and Social Care Information Centre (HSCIC)
  • Local Authorities
  • Education Services
  • Fire and Rescue Services
  • Police & Judicial Services
  • Voluntary Sector Providers
  • Private Sector Providers
  • Other ‘data processors’ which you will be informed of or other organisations involved in the provision of direct care to individual patients.
Rights to object
  • You have the right to object to information being shared between those who are providing you with direct care.
  • This may affect the care you receive – please speak to the practice.
  • You are not able to object to your name, address and other demographic information being sent to NHS Digital.
  • This is necessary if you wish to be registered to receive NHS care.
  • You are not able to object when information is legitimately shared for safeguarding reasons.
  • In appropriate circumstances it is a legal and professional requirement to share information for safeguarding reasons. This is to protect people from harm.
  • The information will be shared with the local safeguarding service SUNDERLAND SAFEGUARDING CHILDREN/ADULT BOARD.
Right to access and correct
  • You have the right to access your medical record and have any errors or mistakes corrected. Please speak to a member of staff or look at our ‘subject access request’ policy on the practice website


  • We are not aware of any circumstances in which you will have the right to delete correct information from your medical record; although you are free to obtain your own legal advice if you believe there is no lawful purpose for which we hold the information and contact us if you hold a different view.
Retention period GP medical records will be kept in line with the law and national guidance. Information on how long records are kept can be found at: or speak to the practice.
Right to complain You have the right to complain to the Information Commissioner’s Office. If you wish to complain follow this link or call the helpline 0303 123 1113
Data we get from other organisations We receive information about your health from other organisations who are involved in providing you with health and social care.

For example, if you go to hospital for treatment or an operation the hospital will send us a letter to let us know what happens.

This means your GP medical record is kept up-to date when you receive care from other parts of the health service.


What Information Do We Collect?

Your healthcare records contain information about your health and any treatment or care you have received previously (e.g. NHS Trust, GP surgery, Walk-In clinic etc.). NHS health records may be electronic, on paper or a mixture of both, and we use a combination of working practices and technology to ensure that your information is kept confidential and secure. Your healthcare record may include the following information.

  • Details about you, such as address and next of kin
  • Any contact the surgery has had with you, such as appointments, clinic visits, emergency appointments, etc.
  • Notes and reports about your health
  • Details about your treatment and care
  • Results on investigations, such as laboratory tests, x-rays, etc.
  • Relevant information from other health professionals, relatives or those who care for you

Why Do We Collect This Information?

To ensure you receive the best possible care, your records are used to facilitate the care you receive. Information held about you may be used to help protect the health of the public and help us manage the NHS. Information may also be used for clinical audit to monitor the quality of the service provided. In addition your information will be used to identify whether you are at risk of a future unplanned hospital admission and/or require support to effectively manage a long term condition.

Health Risk Screening

Your local GP Practice in Sunderland is planning to screen patients aged 18 and over already diagnosed with a long term conditions, such as diabetes, dementia, respiratory disease and heart disease. Health risk screening is now a commonly used practice within the NHS that entails accessing healthcare records electronically, and using the data to identify patients who may be at risk of future hospital admissions. The data is used to identify how best to support patients to avoid admission and to manage their conditions more effectively.

How Do We Use This Information?

The results of the screening will enable your GP to decide whether you would benefit from the assistance of a multidisciplinary care team made up of other healthcare providers, social care professionals such as a district nurse or consultant physician and/or support from voluntary sector organisations. Your information will need to be shared with this team to assist your GP to identify the best care for you.

Do I Need to do Anything to Give my Permission?

No. You do not need to anything if you are happy to give permission for health risk screening.

However if details from your healthcare records need to be shared as part of a clinical care discussion within the multidisciplinary care team, we will contact you to obtain your consent.

What if I do not Want to Give my Permission?

If you have any concerns or wish to opt out of health risk screening you should speak our Business /Practice Manager. The practice will ensure your decision is recorded so your records will not be included in any screening process and/or multidisciplinary care team discussion.

Who Will We Share Your Information With?

For the purposes of Health Risk Screening we may need to share your information with the following organisations, with your consent:

Community Link Nurses and/or Community Matrons from Sunderland Community Health Care Trust (SCHC)
Representatives from Adult Community Services, Sunderland County Council (SCC)
Representatives from Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust (SNHSTSFT)
Integrated Care Coordinators (ICCs) (employed by NCC and SCHC)
Voluntary Support Organisations commissioned by SCCG

How Do We Maintain the Confidentiality of Your Records?

We are committed to protecting your privacy and will only use information collected lawfully in accordance with the Data Protection Act 1998 (which is overseen by the Information Commissioner’s Office), Human Rights Act, the Common Law Duty of Confidentiality, and the NHS Codes of Confidentiality and Security. Every member of staff who works for an NHS organisation has a legal obligation to keep information about you confidential. Anyone who receives information from an NHS organisation has a legal duty to keep it confidential. We maintain our duty of confidentiality to you at all times.

We will only ever use or pass on information about you if others involved in your care have genuine need for it. We will not disclose your information to any third party without your permission unless there are exceptional circumstances (i.e. life or death situations), or where the law requires information to be passed on. Anyone who receives information from us is also under a legal duty to keep this information confidential.

How Your Records are Used to Help the NHS

Your information may be used to help assess the needs of the general population and make informed decisions about the provision of future services. Information can also be used to conduct health research and development, monitor NHS performance, to help NHS plan for the future and to investigate complaints in respect of the services we commission.

We will not publish any information that identifies you or routinely disclose any information about you without your express permission. At any time you have the right to refuse/withdraw consent to information sharing. The possible consequences will be fully explained to you, such as potential delays in receiving care.

There may be circumstances where we are bound to share information about you owing to legal obligation, such as for benefit of public health in the event of a pandemic.

Access to Your Information

You have the right under Data Protection Act 1998 to access, view what information the surgery holds about you, and to have it corrected should it be inaccurate. This is known as ‘the right of subject access’. If we do hold information about you we will:

  • Give you a description of it;
  • Tell you why we are holding it;
  • Tell you who it could be disclosed to; and
  • Let you have a copy of the information in an intelligible form.

If you would like to make a ‘subject access request; please contact the Practice Manager in writing.

There are 2 main record sharing initiatives at the moment.

The Summary Care Record SCR is an electronic record of important patient information, created from GP medical records. It can be seen and used by authorised staff in other areas of the health and care system involved in the patient’s direct care.

The GNR The Great North Care Record is a local version of the summary care record which is data sharing between health agencies in and around Sunderland including Out of Hours, Social Services, Hospitals and ambulance services in the area.  This enables them to access your records for direct care – they can see items such as your allergies/past medical history and medication lists.
Please click on the links below for further information.