Confidentiality & Medical Records
The practice complies with data protection and access to medical records legislation. Identifiable information about you will be shared with others in the following circumstances:
- To provide further medical treatment for you e.g. from district nurses and hospital services.
- To help you get other services e.g. from the social work department. This requires your consent.
- When we have a duty to others e.g. in child protection cases anonymised patient information will also be used at local and national level to help the Health Board and Government plan services e.g. for diabetic care.
If you do not wish anonymous information about you to be used in such a way, please let us know.
Reception and administration staff need access to your medical records to do their jobs. All members of staff are bound by the same rules of confidentiality as the medical staff.
Freedom of Information
Information about the General Practioners and the practice required for disclosure under the Freedom of Information Act can be made available to the general public. All requests for such information should be made to the Practice Manager.
Access to Records
In accordance with the Data Protection Act 1998 and Access to Health Records Act, patients may request to see their medical records. Such requests should be made through the Practice Manager and we may charge an administration fee. No information will be released without the patient's consent unless we are legally obliged to do so.
Annual Infection Control Statement
This annual statement will be generated each year in January in accordance with the requirements of The Health and Social Care Act 2008 Code of Practice on the prevention and control of infections and related guidance. It summarises:
- Any infection transmission incidents and any action taken (these will have been reported in accordance with our Significant Event procedure)
- Details of any infection control audits undertaken, and actions undertaken
- Details of any risk assessments undertaken for prevention and control of infection
- Details of staff training
- Any review and update of policies, procedures, and guidelines
Infection Prevention and Control (IPC) Lead
Weaver Vale Practice has one Lead for Infection Prevention and Control: Jenny Schooler, Practice Nurse
Jenny Schooler keeps updated on infection prevention practice and attends the IPC Meetings.
Infection transmission incidents (Significant Events)
Significant events (which may involve examples of good practice as well as challenging events) are investigated in detail to see what can be learnt and to indicate changes that might lead to future improvements. All significant events are reviewed and learning is cascaded to all relevant staff.
In the past year there have been no significant events raised that related to infection control.
Infection Prevention Audit and Actions
The Annual Infection Prevention and Control audit was completed by Jenny Schooler in December 2023
As a result of the audit, the following things have been identified to be changed in Weaver Vale Practice
- The bag in the specimen box has been replaced with a clear specimen bag
- Cleaning staff have been asked not to store mops with clean heads or leave around the sink area
- Cleaning staff have been advised that cloths are disposed of after use.
Weaver Vale Practice plan to undertake the following audits in 2024
- Annual Infection Prevention and Control audit
- Six monthly cleaning audit to include curtain changing
- Annual Hand hygiene audit
- Six Monthly Waste audit
- Three monthly Sharps bin audit
Risk assessments are carried out Annually.
Legionella (Water) Risk Assessment: The practice has conducted/reviewed its water safety risk assessment to ensure that the water supply does not pose a risk to patients, visitors, or staff, last reviewed. The water is tested monthly by an external company to ensure that it remains risk free.
The cleaning staff run the taps of those rooms that are not in use to prevent the build up of stagnant water.
Immunisation: As a practice we ensure that all our staff are up to date with their Hepatitis B immunisations and offered any occupational health vaccinations applicable to their role (i.e., MMR, Seasonal Flu and Covid vaccinations). We take part in the National Immunisation campaigns for patients and offer vaccinations in house and via home visits to our patient population.
Jenny Schooler is to prepare a document for staff on the important of vaccination for our newsletter and to encourage our staff to be aware of the need to be vaccinated.
Curtains: The NHS Cleaning Specifications state the curtains should be cleaned or if using disposable curtains, replaced every 6 months. To this effect we use disposable curtains and ensure they are changed every 6 months. The window blinds are very low risk and therefore do not require a particular cleaning regime other than regular vacuuming to prevent build-up of dust. The modesty curtains although handled by clinicians are never handled by patients and clinicians have been reminded to always remove gloves and clean hands after an examination and before touching the curtains. All curtains are regularly reviewed and changed if visibly soiled
Cleaning specifications, frequencies, and cleanliness: We also have a cleaning specification and frequency policy which our cleaners and staff work to. An assessment of cleanliness is conducted by the cleaning team and logged. This includes all aspects in the surgery including cleanliness of equipment.
Hand washing sinks: The practice has clinical hand washing sinks in every room for staff to use.
- All our staff receive annual training in infection prevention and control
- All clinical and non -clinical staff have completed blue stream e-learning training.
- IPC Lead should attend quarterly IPC Lead Practice Nurse forums organised by ICB
All Infection Prevention and Control related policies are in date for this year.
Policies relating to Infection Prevention and Control are available to all staff and are reviewed and updated annually and all are amended on an on-going basis as current advice, guidance and legislation changes. Infection Control policies are circulated amongst staff for reading and discussed at meetings on an annual basis.
It is the responsibility of everyone to be familiar with this Statement and their roles and responsibilities under this.
Responsibility for Review
The Infection Prevention and Control Lead Jenny Schooler is responsible for reviewing and producing the Annual Statement for and on behalf of the Weaver Vale Practice
Concerns and Complaints
We make every effort to give the best service possible to every patient who attends our practice.
However, we are aware that things can go wrong and a patient may feel that they have a genuine cause for complaint. If this is so, we would like the opportunity to look into your concerns and discuss this with you so we can look into it as quickly as we can and make changes if possible.
If you would like to discuss any concerns or complaints, please write to the Practice Manager. Further written information is available about the complaints procedure from reception.
A zero tolerance policy towards violent, threatening and abusive behaviour is now in place throughout the NHS.
The doctors, nurses and staff in this practice have the right to do their work in an environment free from violent, threatening or abusive behaviour and everything will be done to protect that right.
At no time will any such behaviour be tolerated in this practice. If you do not respect the rights of our staff we may choose to inform the police and make arrangements for you to be removed from our medical list.
Did Not Attend (DNA) Policy
Most of our Patients know it can sometimes be difficult to get a routine appointment with a GP or Nurse. In the course of events where demand is unpredictable, that cannot easily be remedied.
One thing that makes this more difficult to overcome is the problem of missed routine appointments – DNAs.
Where Patients have been declined routine appointments because the consultations are fully booked, it is at best disappointing when one of those booked appointments does not turn up and has not contacted the Practice to cancel the appointment so that it can be released for others or telephones so late as to make it impossible to allocate to another Patient.
In 2015, there were 2,747 such DNAs - with either GPs or Nurses and, in some cases, double appointments at specialist clinics. This is the equivalent of 457 hours of missed clinical appointments.
Due to the number of patients failing to attend for their appointment this may mean that you may not be able to see the doctor on the day that you wish to.
In an attempt to try and resolve this, the practice has developed the following policy.
- If you fail to attend appointments without informing us we will write to you asking if you could inform the practice if you are unable to attend your appointment.
- If you fail to attend on 3 occasions throughout a 12 month period for appointments you may be removed from the practice list and have to find an alternative GP practice.
Remember that your DNA is another Patient’s denied appointment
Should you need to cancel: here’s how
- By telephone: Call 01928 711911
- By text: Text cancel to 0780 0000199