General Data Protection Regulation came into force on 25 May 2018 to help protect your personal data and privacy. Your privacy is important to me, Frances Watkins, and I want to communicate with my patients in a way which has their consent, and which is in line with UK law on data protection including the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).
1. I need to collect personal information about your health in order to provide you with the best possible treatment. Your requesting treatment from me and my agreement to provide that care constitutes a contract. You can, of course, refuse to provide the information, but if you were to do that I would not be able to provide treatment to you.
2. I have a Legitimate Interest in collecting that information, because without it I cannot do my job effectively and safely.
3. I also may need to contact you in order to confirm your appointment to see me, or to update you on matters related to your medical care. This again constitutes Legitimate Interest, but this time it is your legitimate interest.
4. Provided I have your consent, I may occasionally send information in the form of marketing materials. You may withdraw this consent at any time – see below. Such requests will be acknowledged. I have a legal obligation to retain your electronic records for at least 8 years after your most recent appointment (or age 25, if this is longer). After this period you can ask me to delete your electronic records if you wish.
Otherwise, I will retain your records indefinitely in order that I can provide you with the best possible care should you need to see me at some future date. I am legally advised to keep paper records for a period of eight years.
Your records are stored:
On paper, in locked filing cabinets and my office is always locked out of working hours.
Electronically on my computer which has up-to-date security software. Access to this data is strictly password protected, and the passwords are changed regularly. Any back-ups of this data are all password protected as well.
I will never share your data with anyone who does not need access to it without your written consent. Only the following people/agencies will have routine access to your data:
Me, in order that I can provide you with treatment
My reception staff will have access to your name, address, email address and phone number, as they need to organise my diaries, coordinate appointments and reminders. Such staff will not have access to your medical history or sensitive personal information.
If part of your prescription is sent to you directly from a second party supplier, then your name and address will need to be given to that supplier. Such a supplier would have to be GDPR compliant as well, so your data will be safe.
On your first herbal consultation you will be asked to sign a form confirming that you are consenting to Frances Watkins, Medical Herbalist, holding and processing your personal data to keep you informed about news, events, activities and special offers and for the legitimate interests and as part of our contract as outlined above.