About your Summary Care Record
Your Summary Care Record contains important information about any medicines you are taking, any allergies you suffer from and any bad reactions to medicines that you have previously experienced.
Allowing authorised healthcare staff to have access to this information will improve decision making by doctors and other healthcare professionals and has prevented mistakes being made when patients are being cared for in an emergency or when their GP practice is closed.
Your Summary Care Record also includes your name, address, date of birth and your unique NHS Number to help identify you correctly.
You may want to add other details about your care to your Summary Care Record. This will only happen if both you and your GP agree to do this. You should discuss your wishes with your GP practice.
Healthcare staff will have access to this information, so that they can provide safer care, whenever or wherever you need it, anywhere in England.
Who can see my Summary Care Record?
Healthcare staff who have access to your Summary Care Record:
- need to be directly involved in caring for you
- need to have an NHS Smartcard with a chip and passcode
- will only see the information they need to do their job and
- will have their details recorded every time they look at your record
Healthcare staff will ask for your permission every time they need to look at your Summary Care Record. If they cannot ask you (for example if you are unconscious or otherwise unable to communicate), healthcare staff may look at your record without asking you, because they consider that this is in your best interest.
If they have to do this, this decision will be recorded and checked to ensure that the access was appropriate.
What are my choices?
You have the choice of what information you would like to share and with whom. Authorised healthcare staff can only view your SCR with your permission. The information shared will solely be used for the benefit of your care.
Your options are outlined below:
- Express consent for medication, allergies and adverse reactions only. You wish to share information about medication, allergies and adverse reactions only.
- Express consent for medication, allergies, adverse reactions and additional information. You wish to share information about medication, allergies and adverse reactions and further medical information that includes: Your significant illnesses and health problems, operations and vaccinations you have had in the past, how you would like to be treated (such as where you would prefer to receive care), what support you might need and who should be contacted for more information about you.
- Express dissent for Summary Care Record (opt out). Select this option, if you DO NOT want any information shared with other healthcare professionals involved in your care.
Please note that it is not compulsory for you to complete a consent form. If you choose not to complete a form, a Summary Care Record containing information about your medication, allergies and adverse reactions and additional further medical information will be created for you.
If you choose to opt out of having a Summary Care Record and do not want a SCR, you need to let your GP practice know by completing a Summary Care Record choice form.
If you are unsure if you have already opted out, you should talk to the staff the practice. You can change your mind at any time by simply informing your GP practice and either filling in a Summary Care Record choice form. or asking your GP practice to create a Summary Care Record for you.
The sharing of this additional information during the pandemic period will assist healthcare professionals involved in your direct care and has been directed via the Control of Patient Information (COPI) Covid-19 – Notice under Regulation 3(4) of the Health Service Control of Patient Information Regulations 2002.
Children and the Summary Care Record
If you are the parent or guardian of a child under 16, you should make this information available to them and support the child to come to a decision as to whether to have a Summary Care Record or not.
If you believe that your child should opt-out of having a Summary Care Record, we strongly recommend that you discuss this with your child’s GP. This will allow your child’s GP to highlight the consequences of opting-out, prior to you finalising your decision.
Where can I get more information?
For more information about Summary Care Records you can
- talk to the staff at your GP practice
- phone the Health and Social Care Information Centre on 0300 303 5678