The Summary Care Record is an electronic record of important patient information, created from GP medical records. It can be seen and used by authorised staff in other areas of the health and care system involved in your direct care.
Access to SCR information means that care in other settings is safer, reducing the risk of prescribing errors. It also helps avoid delays to urgent care.
At a minimum, the SCR holds important information about;
- current medication
- allergies and details of any previous bad reactions to medicines
- the name, address, date of birth and NHS number of the patient
The patient can also choose to include additional information in the SCR, such as details of long-term conditions, significant medical history, or specific communications needs
Your information is extracted from practices such as ours and held on central NHS databases.
As with all systems there are pros and cons to think about. When you speak to an emergency doctor you might overlook something that is important and if they have access to your medical record it might avoid mistakes or problems, although even then, you should be asked to give your consent each time a member of NHS Staff wishes to access your record, unless you are medically unable to do so.
On the other hand, you may have strong views about sharing your personal information and wish to keep your information at the level of this practice. NHS Digital, the government agency responsible for the Summary Care Record have agreed with doctors’ leaders that new patients registering with this practice should be able to decide whether or not their information is uploaded to the Central NHS Computer System called The Spine.
For existing patients it is different in that it is assumed that you want your record uploaded to The Spine unless you actively opt out.
For further information visit the Summary Care Record website.
If you choose to opt out of the scheme, then you will need to complete a form and bring it along to the surgery.