From 1st March 2022, all our patients with an online account are able to view new entries in their health records from this date onwards.
Patients will no longer have to make special requests to view this but will need to have an online account- SystmOnline, Airmid App or NHS App.
For patients who already have access to their health records, there will be no change.
If you would like to register for an online account, please complete this form- WMC-Online-Form-27.10.2022-FINAL.pdf (westbournemedical.com) or visit reception to complete a registration form for online services.
Please note. If you have online access but do not wish to see your records online (you may have safeguarding concerns or are worried about someone accessing this coercively) please let us know by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org and we can switch this off manually for you.
Westbourne Medical Centre worked as a pilot site with NHS England and many other GP practices went live with access to medical records online on 1st February 2023.
For more information:
How to get your medical records – NHS (www.nhs.uk)
NHS online services – NHS (www.nhs.uk)
Guidance for patients and service users
You have a legal right to access the personal information held about you by health and care organisations. You can already obtain this information at any time you choose by making a Subject Access Request (SAR), however, it takes up to one calendar month for your GP practice to provide the information.
Once your GP practice has switched on access to new record entries, you will be able to use the NHS App to read new entries made in your GP record. This avoids the need to contact your GP practice to see this information. The entries will include:
- name, age and address
- allergies and adverse reactions
- treatments and medications
- test results
- notes made in your GP record
However, please be aware that GP practices use different computer systems, so the date the GP practice will switch on will differ depending on the system they use. GP practices will raise awareness when the switch on is due to happen. Please also be aware that GPs can manually turn off access to records via the NHS App, either partially or fully, if there is a risk of harm to you or someone else.
To access this service via the NHS App, you will need to register for an NHS account:
- if you are 16 or over and already registered on the NHS App, you will automatically be granted access when the service is switched on
- if you are below the age of 16 and registered on the NHS App, you will automatically be granted access when you reach the age of 16
- if you are aged 11 – 16, you can apply to your GP practice for access to your health record, but it will not be granted automatically
- if you are aged 11 – 13 and your GP practice agrees, your access will be limited to the web version of the app
If you have access to health and care services on someone else’s behalf, for example, a child or a family member (also known as proxy access), you will still have the same level of access to their account when the change comes into effect. If you presently have full record access, you will keep full record access. However, if you only have proxy access for things like ordering medications, you will need to apply to the GP practice in order to see new record entries for the person. The GP practice will consider your request. Once you are registered for proxy access, you will see a linked profile for your family member in the NHS App.
If you move to a new GP practice, you will not be able to see the entries which were made at your previous practice on the NHS App. You will begin afresh and only see entries made by your new GP practice, which will be displayed automatically on the NHS App. This does not mean that any previous information is lost. To see your previous entries, you would need to make a request for access to historic records at your new practice.
You may come across abbreviations in your record which are unfamiliar. You can access a ‘Help with Abbreviations’ section in the NHS App that provides definitions for abbreviations commonly used in medical records to help you understand them. There is also an abbreviations information page online.
If you think a record entry is inaccurate, please see our guidance on amending records to find out what you can do about this.
Your GP records are important. Although the NHS App and other approved apps that they are stored on are secure, you should keep your account details safe, just like your bank account details. If you have any concerns, for example, that a family member might log into your account without your permission, you should inform your GP and they will be able to manually turn off access. Turning off access in the NHS App does not stop you from requesting access to your full record at any time via Subject Access Request (SAR).
Use of the NHS App is optional, and you can still access services in other ways if you are not registered for an NHS account.