Access to Health Records
What is a Health Record
The doctor and team of health professionals caring for you keep records about your health and any treatment and care you receive from the NHS. These records help to make sure you receive the best possible care. The records may include
- Basic details about you, such as address and next of kin.
- Details of your ongoing care
- Information about past hospital appointments and admissions
- Results of investigations such as x-rays and laboratory tests.
Under the Data Protection Act 1998 you, or an authorised representative, have the right to access your health record.
- You have a right to apply for access if:
- You are the patient.
- You have parental responsibility for a patient who is a under the age of 16.
- You are the person authorised in writing to make an application on behalf of the patient. (This requires the patient's signature).
- You are a person appointed by the court to manage the patient's affairs when they are unable to e.g. power of attorney (documented proof must be provided).
How do I request copies of my health records?
You need to complete the Trust’s ‘Access to Health Records’ form and provide proof of identity.
Access to health records of the deceased
The Access to Health Records Act 1990 provides certain individuals with a right of access to the health record of a deceased individual. These include the executor or administrator of the deceased person’s estate and a person who may have a claim arising out of the patient’s death.
How do I request copies of a deceased persons record?
You need to complete the Trust’s ‘Access to Records’ form as above and provide evidence of entitlement to access.
Third Party Access requests from Solicitors or Insurance Companies
Third party applications from Solicitors or Insurance companies in relation to third party personal injury claims require written consent from the patient before records can be disclosed. These requests are processed by the Access to Records Department.
What is the fee for copies of health records?
The fee for copies of health records provided under the Data Protection Act 1998 will not exceed £50.
The fee for copies of health records provided under the Access to Health Records Act 1990 will be confirmed upon receipt of application.
Information will not be released until the relevant fee has been paid.
How do I pay for copies of health records?
You can pay by cheque, made payable to Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and include it with your completed application form. Alternatively you can pay by cash/credit card via the General Office in the hospital main entrance between 9a.m. and 4p.m. Monday to Friday at either Royal Preston Hospital or Chorley & District Hospital.
What is the timeframe for receiving copies of health records?
The Data Protection Act 1998 states that copies of records must be provided within 40 days of receiving a completed application form and fee.
We aim to provide copies of health records within 40 calendar days of receiving your completed application form and fee. We will inform you of any delays.
In some circumstances the Trust is legally required to withhold all or some of the information held in an individual’s health record:
- Where the identity of an individual cannot be satisfied by the Trust.
- Where consent of the individual has not been given, but is legally required.
- Where it has been judged that supplying the information is likely to cause serious harm to the physical or mental health or condition of the patient or any other person.
- Where providing access would disclose information relating to or provided by a third party who had not consented to the disclosure. This exemption may not apply where that third party is a health professional involved in the care of the individual.
- If a deceased person had indicated that they did not wish information to be disclosed, or the record contains information that the deceased person expected to remain confidential.
Where can I get further information from?
For more information about access to health records you can click below to visit the NHS choices website.
or the Department of Health website link below.
If you wish to make an application you should complete the relevant form and return it to the following address:
Access to Records Department
or via email to