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Obtaining your medical records
Obtaining your medical records from your GP or Hospital should be relatively simple. A request for medical records should be done under the Data Protection Act 1998 in relation to a living person, and the Access to Medical Records Act when the request is made in relation to a deceased person.
Requesting records under the Data Protection Act
You should write (although it can be done orally) to the holder of your records to request them. You may limit your request to certain dates / specialities or you can request them in their entirety.
The holder of your records will then have a period of 40 days to provide you with a copy of the requested records.
A fee of up to £50.00 will be payable.
GPs and Hospitals receive a large number of requests for records. It is not always possible for them to provide them within the 40 day time limit. They should, however, inform you of any delay.
Further, it is often necessary for the records to be checked for references to third parties; these must be redacted prior to release to you as the Data Protection Act only relates to information about you.
Unacceptable delays, or refusals, can be dealt with by way of an application to the Court. This is used as a last resort by Lawyers to ensure the request is dealt with and to challenge any refusal.
You also have the right to request to view your records at any time. A fee to do so may be payable.
Requesting records of a person that has died
This is slightly different in that the request is made under the Access to Health Records Act.
The fee for copying records of a deceased person is not limited to £50.00.
Only a person legally entitled (such as the administrator of the deceased’s estate) is able to request the records.
Records held by a GP will normally be sent to the PCT on a person’s death. Your request will be forwarded by the GP to the PCT.
The 40 day time limit still applies.
Medical Records Review Service
We offer a fixed fee medical records review service. We employ a number of experienced Nurses and Midwives who all have extensive experience of medical records collation. We are able to: obtain your records, sort, paginate and review. Following the review, in conjunction with our Lawyers, we are able to advise you as to whether your Medical Negligence claim would be successful.