Other Information

Complaints and Comments

We operate a complaints policy in line with the NHS complaints procedure. If you have a complaint or wish to comment about the service you have received from the practice this should be made in writing directly to the Practice Coordinator; Sylvie Blackmore. Complaints concerning the ‘out of hours’ service operated by IC24 should be made directly to IC24 on 08451 450 121 or to NHS 111 on 01737 363866.

If you are unhappy with a local response or resolution to any issue regarding the NHS, please contact the NHS South Commissioning Support Unit whose details you will find under 'Local Primary Care Services'.

Freedom of Information Act

Southgate Surgery conforms to the requirements of the Freedom of Information Act 2000. A publication scheme has been produced in accordance with the Act: a copy of which can be obtained by writing to the Practice Manager.

The Patient's Charter for England

The practice fully supports the patient’s charter. For more information concerning this can be obtained from the Practice Manager.

The Practice Charter Standards

These are local standards set within the Practice for the benefits of our patients. It is our job to give you treatment and advice.
Following discussions with you, you will receive the most appropriate care, given by suitably qualified staff. No care or treatment will be given without your informed consent.
In the interest of your health, it is important for you to understand all the information given to you. Please ask us questions if you are unsure about anything.

Summary Care Record (SCR)

The NHS is changing the way that patient information is stored and shared in England.
Summary Care Records may provide healthcare staff with faster and reliable access to their patients’ key health information, such as details of existing illness, allergies, current prescriptions and adverse reactions to medicines.
If you have any questions or if you wish to discuss your choices or concerns, please telephone the NHS Care Records Line on 0845 603 8512.

Sharing of your medical records between health professionals

In order to provide the best and safest health care it is possible to allow clinicians caring for you to view medical information recorded by other healthcare services. 
For example it may be useful for your GP to be able to read information recorded by a district nurse to monitor your care and make a more informed decision when planning how best to treat you. 

How does it work? Each service treating you holds their own record. As a patient , you can choose whether or not to share information with other NHS services who are treating you and which services can view shared information.

Each service providing care will ask the following questions:
Would you like our service to view your shared record? 
Would you like the information we hold about you to be part of the shared record? 

  • Can I refuse to share? – Yes you have the right to choose which services can share information or view shared information and you can change your mind at anytime

  • If I agree to share, who can view my information? – Only health professionals who are currently involved in your health care and you have given consent to view can see information in the shared record. 

  • If I agree to share, who can view my information? – Only health professionals who are currently involved in your health care and you have given consent to view can see information in the shared record. 

Please ask at reception for any further details

Opting Out of Summary Care Record (SCR)

From February 2014, all Crawley GP practices are about to be involved in a national programme which will securely extract data from the surgeries’ clinical data bases. 

A programme called care.data is to be launched, which will make better use of health information to improve the NHS whilst protecting confidentiality. For example, it will allow the NHS to see where in England the best outcomes for an illness are so that those planning services locally can learn from best practice and make changes so that all patients receive the best care. 

The data to be extracted will include the patient’s NHS number, date of birth, referrals, diagnosis, vaccinations, biological values (eg blood pressure) and prescriptions, but not the patient’s name and address, nor any consultations or letters attached to the patient’s record. 

Information from the different places an individual receives care will be linked securely in a secure system. Information which does not reveal your identity can then be used by others, such as researchers and those planning health services so improvements can be made to the NHS which benefit everyone. 

Occasionally, researchers need to access information which does identify you but only when there is special legal approval and under strict controls. 
We believe it is important for all patients to be aware of this new ‘data extraction service’ which affects everyone who is an NHS patient. Data extraction is due to commence in the Autumn of 2014. 

You have a choice.
If you are happy for your information to be used in this way you do not have to do anything. 
If you have any concerns or wish to prevent this from happening the practice can add a code to your record so that your health information is not extracted. Please put your request in writing to the practice and we will mark your medical records accordingly. 
Alternatively please ask at reception for a copy of the leaflet “How information about you helps us to provide better care”.

More information can also be found here www.nhs.uk/caredata 


The NHS is committed to improving the quality of health services for all patients. Sharing information about the care you have received helps the NHS to understand the health needs of everyone along with the quality of treatment and care provided. It also helps researchers by supporting studies that identify patterns in diseases, responses to different treatments and the effectiveness of different services. Sharing information about you and your experiences also helps to:

• Find more effective ways of preventing, treating and managing illness.

• Make sure that any changes or improvements to services reflect the needs of patients

• Understand who is most at risk of particular diseases and conditions, so those who plan care can provide preventative services

• Improve your understanding of the outcomes of care, giving you greater confidence in Health and Social Care services

• Guide decisions about how to manage NHS resources so that they can best support the treatment and care of all patients

• Identify who could be at risk of a condition or would benefit from a particular treatment

• Make sure that NHS organisations receive the correct payments for services they provide

Opting Out of Care.Data

As with the Summary Care Record above, you have a choice to opt-out of the Care.Data information sharing scheme if you so wish.

Please ask at Reception for the relevant forms which will be processed by Sylvie Blackmore who will ensure that your Medical Records are coded accordingly.

Further information about Care.Data is available as follows:


Patient Information Line: 0300 456 3531

Proactive Care

Proactive Care is a new way of supporting patients who have a long-term health condition or complex health and social care needs and who are at risk of their condition worsening.

The Proactive Care Team are a dedicated group involving NHS and Social Care Professionals; including Nurses, Physiotherapists, Social Workers and Occupational Therapists.

The Proactive Care Team are based here at Southgate Medical Group but work from GP referrals from all Practices in Crawley.

The aim of the Proactive Care Team is to enable those patients in Crawley identified as having the issues stated above, to live independently for as longs as possible.

The Team work closely with patients’ GP’s, local hospital staff and others in the community to ensure the right support at the right time. Plans will be agreed with patients that support them in managing their own needs and the Team also show patients how to recognize when they may need additional support and how to get it.


Access to Information and Data Protection Act 1998

Information given to the surgery by patients may be recorded. This may be shared with other organisations in order to provide patient care, and may be used to support clinical audits and other work to monitor the quality of care provided.

Patients have the right to object to information they provide in confidence being disclosed to a third party in a form that identifies them, even if this is someone who might provide essential healthcare.

Patients have the right to see their medical records, where copies of records are requested a fee will be charged in accordance with the Act.  Please contact the Practice Manager for further information.


Patient Confidentiality

Patient Confidentiality & Data Protection means that we are unable to discuss ANY aspect of a patients’ medical records or care with anyone other than the patient unless the patient is under 16 years of age; in this case it must be the legal parent or guardian who we speak to.

If you wish us to discuss your medical records of any aspect of your care with someone else, we MUST HAVE WRITTEN CONSENT.


Your information and how we use it

This section provides information about why the NHS records information about you and how it is used; with whom we may share information; your right to see your health records; and how we keep your records confidential.

Why we collect information about you
In the NHS we aim to provide you with the highest quality health care.
To do this we must keep records about you, your health and the care we have provided or plan to provide to you.

Your doctor and other health professionals caring for you, such as nurses or physiotherapists, keep records about your health and treatment so that they are able to provide you with the best possible care.

These records are called your ‘health care record’ and may be stored in paper form or on central computer databases and may include:

• basic details about you, such as your address, date of birth, and next of kin 
• contact we have had with you, such as clinical visits 
• notes and reports about your health 
• details and records about your treatment and care 
• results of x-rays, laboratory tests etc. 

How your records are used to help you
The way that health information is recorded has changed over time and it is now possible for health care professionals to add information into a central clinical system which links directly to your GP record. We also have electronic tools that enable the NHS to understand the risks your health is putting you at and to put in place services that will reduce this risk.

This provides you with a better level of care because the people caring for you have accurate and up-to-date information about your health.
Your health care record is used to ensure that:

• health care professionals looking after you have accurate and up-to-date information about you to help them decide on any future care you may require 
• full information is available should you see another doctor or be referred to a specialist or another part of the NHS 
• there is a good basis for assessing the type and quality of care you have received 
• your concerns can be properly investigated if you need to complain. 

How your records are used to help the NHS
In order for the NHS to make the best use of its resources we need to understand what care we are providing and to whom. Whenever we do not need to know it is about you individually we will only use your information in an anonymised form. Your information can help the NHS to:

• plan services to ensure we meet the needs of our population in the future. This includes predictive and preventative care in a proactive care setting
• look after the health of the general public, e.g. notifying central NHS groups of outbreaks of infectious diseases 
• report events to the appropriate authorities when we are required to do so by law, e.g. notification of births 
• undertake clinical audit of the quality of services provided 
• report and investigate complaints, claims and untoward incidents 
• prepare statistics on our performance for the Department of Health. 
• review our care to make sure that it is of the highest standard 
• teach and train health care professionals 
• conduct health research and development. 
• pay your GP or hospital for the care you have received 
• audit NHS accounts

There may be other uses to which Health Care Records may be of assistance to the NHS.

How we keep your information safe
Everyone working for the NHS has a duty to keep your information confidential and secure.

However, from time to time, there may be a need to share some or all of your information with other health care professionals or NHS organisations so that we can work together to provide the best possible care.

We will only ever share your information if it is in the best interests for your NHS, and in certain circumstances, social care.

The CCG will not disclose any information that identifies you to anyone outside your care team without your express permission unless in exceptional circumstances, such as where we are required to do so by law.

You have the right
You have the right to confidentiality under the Data Protection Act 1998, the Human Rights Act 1998 and the common law duty of confidence. The Disability Discrimination and the Race Relations Acts may also apply.
You also have the right to ask for a copy of all records about you:

• Your request must be made in writing (email is acceptable) to the organisation holding your information. 
• There may be a charge to have a printed copy of the information held about you. 
• We are required to respond to you within 40 days. You will need to give adequate information (e.g. full name, address, date of birth, NHS number) and you will be required to provide identification before any information is released to you. 

If you think that there are inaccuracies in your record, you have the right to request that these be corrected or annotated.

If you have any concerns about how your information may be shared, please discuss them with your health care provider, e.g. GP, nurse, dentist.

How we keep your records confidential

Everyone working in the NHS or for Social Services has a legal duty to keep information about you confidential.

Records will be kept in line with the Department of Health Records Management Code of Practice which determines the minimum length of time that records should be kept for.

Our guiding principle is that we hold your records in strict confidence

We have a duty to:
• maintain full and accurate records of the care we provide to you 
• keep records about you confidential, secure and accurate 
• provide information in a format that is accessible to you (for example, in large type if you are partially sighted). 

We only share information if
• it ensures you receive the best care possible
• you ask us to do so 
• we ask and you give us specific permission 
• we have to do this by law 
• we have special permission for health or research purposes 
• we have special permission because the interests of the public are thought to be of greater importance than your confidentiality. 

How you can arrange to see your own health records
The Data Protection Act (1998) entitles you to view the information contained in your health care record.

Please contact the following organisations to see or obtain a copy of your records:
• For your main health care records, please contact your GP practice directly. 
• In some cases, if you have received hospital treatment this may not be included in the health care records that your GP practice holds, so please contact the hospital directly. 

You will need to apply in writing and then either your GP practice or hospital trust will contact you to advise you of the process

Southgate Medical Group 137 Brighton Road, Crawley, West Sussex, RH10 6TE
Telephone 01293 223666  Fax 0844 8151221  Appointment Cancellation Line 01293 536281