Misuse of Records

Health written question – answered on 11th July 2005.

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Photo of Lynne Jones Lynne Jones Labour, Birmingham, Selly Oak

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what penalties are laid down for misuse of records by (a) permanent, (b) temporary and (c) agency NHS employees with access to patient records.

Photo of Liam Byrne Liam Byrne Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health) (Care Services)

There are no centrally laid down penalties for the misuse of patient records, as ensuring that records are managed to appropriate standards is a responsibility of each individual national health service organisation. However, departmental guidance, set out in Confidentiality: NHS Code of Practice", published in November 2003, makes it clear that misuse of patient information should be treated as a serious disciplinary matter, possibly resulting in legal proceedings.

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