Your Rights Under Data Protection
This section contains a description of your data protection rights within NHS Dumfries and Galloway
The right to be informed
NHS Dumfries and Galloway must explain how we use your personal information. We use a number of ways to communicate how personal information is used, including:
- This Data Protection Notice
- Information leaflets
- Discussions with staff providing your care
The right of access
You have the right to access your own personal information.
This right includes making you aware of what information we hold along with the opportunity to satisfy you that we are using your information fairly and legally.
You have the right to obtain:
- Confirmation that your personal information is being held or used by us
- Access to your personal information
- Additional information about how we use your personal information
Although we must provide this information free of charge, if your request is considered unfounded or excessive, or if you request the same information more than once, we may charge a reasonable fee.
If you would like to access your personal information, you can do this by completing a written request Form Subject Access Request (Health Records) and send to the Data Protection Officer.
Once we have received your request and you have provided us with enough information for us to locate your personal information, we will respond to your request without delay, within one month (30 days). However If your request is complex we may take longer, by up to two months, to respond. If this is the case we will tell you and explain the reason for the delay.
The right to rectification
- If the personal information we hold about you is inaccurate or incomplete you have the right to have this corrected.
- If it is agreed that your personal information is inaccurate or incomplete we will aim to amend your records accordingly, normally within one month, or within two months where the request is complex. However, we will contact you as quickly as possible to explain this further if the need to extend our timescales applies to your request. Unless there is a risk to patient safety, we can restrict access to your records to ensure that the inaccurate or incomplete information is not used until amended.
- If for any reason we have shared your information with anyone else, perhaps during a referral to another service for example, we will notify them of the changes required so that we can ensure their records are accurate.
- If on consideration of your request NHS Dumfries and Galloway does not consider the personal information to be inaccurate then we will add a comment to your record stating your concerns about the information. If this is case we will contact you within one month to explain our reasons for this.
- If you are unhappy about how NHS Dumfries and Galloway has responded to your request for rectification we will provide you with information on how you can complain to the Information Commissioner’s Office, or how to take legal action.
The right to object
When NHS Dumfries and Galloway is processing your personal information for the purpose of the performance of a task carried out in the public interest or in the exercise of official authority you have the right to object to the processing and also seek that further processing of your personal information is restricted. Provided NHS Dumfries and Galloway can demonstrate compelling legitimate grounds for processing your personal information, for instance; patient safety or for evidence to support legal claims, your right will not be upheld.
There are other rights under current Data Protection Law however these rights only apply in certain circumstances.
The right to erasure
The right to erasure is also known as “the right to be forgotten” and in general refers to an individual’s right to request the deletion or removal of personal information where there is no compelling reason for NHS Dumfries and Galloway to continue using it.
As with other rights, there are particular conditions around this right and it does not provide individuals with an absolute right to be forgotten.
Individuals have the right to have their personal information deleted or removed in the following circumstances:
- When it is no longer necessary for the purpose for which it was collected.
- When NHS Dumfries and Galloway no longer have a legal basis for using your personal information, for example if you gave us consent to use your personal information in a specific way, and you withdraw your consent, we would need to stop using your information and erase it unless we had an overriding reason to continue to use it.
- When you object to NHS Dumfries and Galloway using your personal information and there is no overriding legitimate interest for us to continue using it.
- If we have used your personal information unlawfully.
- If there is a legal obligation to erase your personal information for example by court order.
NHS Dumfries and Galloway can refuse to deal with your request for erasure when we use your personal information for the following reasons:
- to comply with a legal obligation for the performance of a public interest task or exercise of official authority.
- for public health purposes in the public interest.
- archiving purposes in the public interest, scientific research historical research or statistical purpose.
- the exercise or defence of legal claims.
When using personal information our legal basis is usually that its use is necessary for the performance of a task carried out in the public interest or in the exercise of official authority vested in us under the NHS Scotland Act as noted previously. This means that in most circumstances we can refuse requests for erasure. However we will advise you of this as soon as possible following receipt of your request.
The right to restrict processing
You have the right to control how we use your personal information in some circumstances. This is known as the right to restriction. When processing is restricted, NHS Dumfries and Galloway are permitted to store your personal information, but not further use it until an agreement is reached with you about further processing. We can retain enough information about you to ensure that your request for restriction is respected in the future.
Examples of ways you can restrict our processing would be:
- If you challenge the accuracy of your personal information, stop using it until we check its accuracy.
- If you object to processing which is necessary for the performance of our tasks in the public interest or for the purpose of legitimate interests, we will restrict our processing while we consider whether our legitimate grounds override your individual interests, rights and freedoms.
- If our use of your personal information is found to be unlawful and you ask for restriction instead of full erasure we will restrict our processing.
- If we no longer need your personal information but you need it to establish, exercise or defend a legal claim, we will restrict our processing.
- If we have shared your personal information with any individuals or organisations, if we restrict our processing, we will tell those individuals or organisations about our restriction if it is possible and not an unreasonable amount of effort.
Whenever we decide to lift a restriction on processing we will tell you.
The right to data portability
The right to data portability allows individuals to obtain and re-use their personal information for their own purposes across different services. It allows them to move, copy or transfer personal information easily from one IT environment to another in a safe and secure way. For example: it enables consumers to take advantage or applications and services which can use their information to find them a better deal.
The right to data portability only applies when the individual has submitted their personal information directly, through electronic means to NHS Dumfries and Galloway. This means that in most circumstances the right to data portability does not apply within NHS Dumfries and Galloway.
Rights related to automated decision making and profiling
You have the right to object to any instances where a decision is made about you solely by automated means without any human involvement, including profiling.
NHS Dumfries and Galloway does not undertake any decision-making about you using wholly automated means.
The right to complain
NHS Dumfries and Galloway employ a Data Protection Officer to check that we handle personal information in a way that meets data protection law. If you are unhappy with the way in which we use your personal information please contact the Data Protection Officer.
You also have the right to complain about how we use your personal information to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO). Details about this are on their website at www.ico.org.uk.