Today, records are kept in all the places where you receive care. These places can usually only share information from your records by letter, email, fax or phone. At times, this can slow down treatment and sometimes information can be hard to access.
Summary Care Records have been introduced to improve the safety and quality of patient care. Because the Summary Care Record is an electronic record it will give healthcare staff faster, easier access to essential information about you, to help provide you with safe treatment when you need care in an emergency or when your GP practice is closed.
Summary Care Records contain important information about any medications you are taking, allergies you suffer from and any bad reactions to medicines that you have had. The record will also include your name, address, date of birth and your unique NHS number to help identify you correctly. Giving healthcare staff access to this information can prevent mistakes being made when caring for you in an emergency.
You may want to add other details about your care to your summary care record. This will only happen if you ask for the information to be included.
A summary care record will automatically be created for you. If you do not wish to have one then you will need to fill out an opt-out form and hand it in to the surgery. Opt-out forms are available at reception or at www.nhscarerecords.nhs.uk/options.
For more information about Summary Care Records and your choices:
- Phone the Summary Care Record Information Line on 0300 123 3020;
- Contact your local Patient Advice and Liaison service (PALS) www.pals.nhs.uk; or
- Visit www.nhscarerecords.nhs.uk.