Confidentiality and Internet security

Our responsibilities

Confidentiality is one of our most important responsibilities as a medical practice. We have a strict ‘need to know’ policy about your medical information. Every staff member, even doctors, can only access your information when they are involved in legitimate medical business.

Each member of staff who has access to your medical record (either your paper file or on the computer) has training about their professional responsibilities with regard to confidentiality. They sign a contract committing them to strict rules. The same will apply to all email correspondence.

In most cases, email will only be read by the doctor running the email clinic. We use the NHS.net email system, which has sophisticated, government-approved security, including encryption of data before transmission.

Your privacy online

You may wish to think about where and how you access your email so that you maintain your own privacy. For instance, if you share a computer with others, reading your email through a web browser might be more private that downloading them to the email programme.

If you subscribe to an integrated ‘cloud’ service for your emails, contacts, photos, etc, such as Google Gmail or Apple iCloud, emails that appear on one device (your phone, home computer, tablet) can be read on others that share the same account. Deleting an email on one device, is not always a guarantee that it is deleted from them all.

For further information about protecting your privacy and on internet security see:

BBC Webwise: www.bbc.co.uk/webwise/topics/safety-and-privacy/
Get Safe Online: www.getsafeonline.org