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NHS Summary Care Record and Opting Out

The Summary Care Record is an electronic summary of a patient’s key health information.

At first, your SCR will contain important information about your health, such as details of allergies, your current prescriptions and whether you have had any bad reactions to medicines.

After that, each time you use any NHS health service,we may add details about any health problems, summaries of your careand the professionals treating you to your SCR.

The NHS is gradually introducing SCRs across England. The PCT have written to Suffolk patients about this, so that you have time to think about your options whether to have a SCR or not.

The NHS will ask your permission if we need to look to look at information in your Summary Care Record.  When this is not possible,for example in an emergency when you are unconscious, staff will tell you later.

You may be able to view your  SCR online once it's created, using a secure website called HealthSpace. This service is free of charge.

Many people have concerns about the speed of the roll out, the previous breeches of IT security of patients records when uploaded centrally, and the fact that people don't yet know what information will later be held on the record.

If you opt out now you can opt in later. If you don't opt out in Suffolk your record was to be uploaded on June 6th, but can be 'hidden' later at your request, so that your have effectively opted out.

STOP PRESS! The upload of your medical records to a central system has been postponed. Suffolk doctors have been in discussion with the PCT as we are unhappy that our patients have not been fully informed about the upload of their records and what it means. All Suffolk practices advised AGAINST uploading information.

Suffolk PCT have agreed NOT to upload the SCR until Suffolk doctors agree that their patients have been properly informed as to what this involves, and have had chance to opt out. This will not be until AT LEAST the end of the year.

Your Summary Care Record options

I am happy to have a Summary Care Record (SCR)

If you are happy to have a SCR, you do not need to do anything and a record will eventually be created for you. BUT NOT YET.

I am unsure, or do not want a Summary Care Record (SCR)

Substantial work is taking place to modernise the NHS, including the introduction of the SCR, in order to reduce errors and improve health outcomes for a great many people. However, you can choose not to have a SCR if you want to. If youchoose not to have a SCR, your health records will stay as they are now.

You could have a SCR but limit the information that health-carestaff can access. It is unclear at present what information may be held on the SCR in the future. Read the information on the NHS website and consider your options.

If you think that you do not want to have an SCR, complete the form for opting out and bring it to your GP practice (you do not need an appointment. Whatever you decide,the NHS will do its best to provide you with safe, efficient care whether or not you have a SCR.

What if I change my mind?

Whatever you decide, you can change your mind at any time. If you decide not to have a SCR but then change your mind, we can still create one for you. If you decide after we have created your SCR that you do not want it, the NHS will 'hide' your record to make sure that health-care staff who try to access it will not be able to see it.

The NHS will only make your record available again if whoever wants to see it asks in writing and if an investigation has found it is necessary.

It is possible to apply to have your record deleted rather than hidden, but that will be difficult if the record has already been used to give you care.

Where can I find out more?

For more information about the NHS Summary Care Records Service contact the NHS Care Records Service Information Line on 0845 603 8510.

You can also find more information by contacting Suffolk's Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) on 0800 389 6819 or by email at

Opting out

If you wish to opt-out of the Summary Care Record please you can download an opt out form from the NHS SCR website. Please complete the form, sign and return it to your GP practice.

The practice also has opt out forms if you need one.

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