As we all continue to follow the government guidelines and with thanks to the highly successful vaccine programme, we are working towards restoring some areas of General Practice that have been temporarily on hold due to pandemic pressures. Read More.
Subject Access Requests
In the current climate printing patient records is deemed as non-essential work and very low priority. You can advise the solicitor that you will need an extension of up to 90 days due to the Covid 19 situation. This should be done in the first week when you get the original letter.
The ICO have confirmed that they will not take action for anyone not able to comply with a SAR request due to the pandemic
See the information on the ICO website
If a patient requests a SAR the easiest option may be to give them online access to all their records. You will need to redact third party information but it may stop the need for producing a paper copy. ID can be verified by telephone using the vouching method – this entails asking the patient to confirm information from their record e.g. when they had an operation or when they last had a BP check.
Alternatively patients can log in using the NHS App – they can do all the ID checks themselves using their phone and do not need to come to see you for this. The level of access they will be given will be the basic level – meds, allergies, detailed coded entries and appointments (though these are probably no longer available as they have been replaced by telephone triage).