Our Data Protection Policy
Keeping Your Records
In providing your dental care and treatment, we will ask for information about you and your health. We may also receive information from other persons and organisations who have been involved in providing your care. Dental Care Centre
complies with the 1998 Data Protection Act and the General Data Protection Regulation (EU 2016/679) and this Notice describes our procedures for ensuring that personal information about patients is processed fairly and lawfully. It sets out the type of personal information we hold, why we hold it and what we do with it.
We are Dental Care Centre and we operate at 1 Church Road, Teddington, Middlesex. We can be reached via email – firstname.lastname@example.org – and by telephone – 020 8977 3746. The Practice Principals, Ben Griffith and John O'Leary are responsible for keeping secure the information about you that we hold. Those at the practice who have access to your information include dentists, hygienists and other dental professionals involved with your care and treatment, the reception staff and managers responsible for the administration and management of the practice, plus the
virtual reception service that answers calls for us when we are closed or helping other patients.
WHAT INFORMATION DO WE HOLD?
In order to provide you with a high standard of dental care and attention, we need to hold personal information about you. We can only keep and use information for specific reasons set out in the law. If we want to keep and use information about your health, we can only do so in particular circumstances. Below, we describe the information we hold, why and
the lawful basis for collecting and using it:
Contact details such as your name, age, date of birth, address, telephone
numbers and email address. This information allows us to fulfil our
contract with you by providing appointments and information about your
care. We will also use this information to send you reminders and recall
appointments as we have a legitimate interest to ensure your continuing
care and to make you aware of our services.
Dental records comprising information about your dental and general health, including: clinical records made by dentists and other healthcare professionals involved with your care and treatment; x-rays, clinical photographs, digital scans of your mouth and teeth, study models; medical and dental histories (including details of your general medical practitioner); treatment plans/estimates; records of consent; details of your appointments; details of any complaints you have made and how these complaints were dealt with; correspondence with you and other health professionals or institutions. We collect and use this information to allow us to fulfil our contract with you – to discuss your treatment options and provide dental care that meets your needs. We also use this information for the legitimate interest of ensuring the quality of
treatment we provide.
Financial information includes the fees we have charged, the amounts you have paid and some payment details. This information forms part of our contractual obligation to you to provide dental care and allows us to meet
our legal financial requirements.
HOW WE USE YOUR INFORMATION
To provide you with the dental care and treatment that you need, we require up-to-date and accurate information about you. Where an email address has been provided, we may contact you to confirm that appointments have been made for you. We will contact you by a SMS text message or telephone to remind you in advance of any appointments you have booked. These contacts are normally made in the 48 hours prior to the appointment – sometimes further in advance
if necessary. We may share your information with your dental insurance company, where relevant, in connection with claims that you make (your written authority will be sought by the insurer on each occasion). We may contact you via email to conduct patient surveys or to find out if you are happy with the treatment you received for quality control purposes. We will seek your preference for how we contact you about your dental care. Our usual methods are telephone, email or letter.
Your information is normally used only by those working at the practice but there may be instances where we need to share it – for example, with:
A hospital, community dental service or other health professionals caring
Specialist dental and medical services to which we may refer you
Your dental insurance provider
The Care Quality Commission
Debt collection agencies / HMCTS / Insolvency Practitioners
The GDC, DCS, defence organisations, our insurers or legal advisers
We will only disclose your information on a need-to-know basis and will limit any information that we share to the minimum necessary. We will let you know in advance if we send your medical information to another medical provider and we will give you the details of that provider at that time. In certain circumstances required by law or by a court order we may need to disclose your information to a third party not connected with your health care, including HMRC or other law enforcement or government agencies. In all other situations, disclosure that is not covered by this Policy will occur only when we have your specific consent. Where possible you will be informed of these requests for disclosure. In the event of a claim or complaint being made against us (or the threat of a claim or complaint) we may also need to share your information with the General Dental Council, the Dental Complaints Service, our defence organisation, insurers and legal advisers. In the event that you do not pay our fees, we may need to take recovery action which may involve sharing some of your information with a debt collection agency, legal advisers, the courts service, an insolvency practitioner, etc.
We are also required to allow the Care Quality Commission access to your information when they carry out an inspection or investigation. In order to ensure proper practice administration and that all communication between team members and third parties (including patients) is appropriate and accords with GDC principles of professional conduct, all incoming
communications, whether physical (eg letters in the post) or electronic (eg emails, SMS messages) are opened and read by the Practice Manager, NADINE BARRY, regardless of who they are addressed to or whose attention they are
marked for. This does not apply to items of post that have clearly been delivered in error – eg where they are addressed to a neighbour and have been left by the postman by mistake.
PLEASE NOTE: we do not record or monitor verbal communications.
KEEPING YOUR INFORMATION SAFE
Personal data about you is held in the practice’s computer system and/or in a manual filing system. The information is not accessible to those who do not work for the practice and only authorised members of staff have access to it. They understand their legal responsibility to maintain confidentiality and follow practice procedures to ensure this. Our computer system has secure audit trails and we back up information in an encrypted form to a remote server on every working day. We take precautions to ensure the security of the premises, the practice filing systems and computers: see also the practice’s Data Security Policy.
We will retain your dental records indefinitely while you remain a patient of the practice. If you cease to be a patient, we will continue to hold them for at least another eleven years, or in the case of children until they reach the age of 25, whichever is the longer.
ACCESS TO YOUR INFORMATION AND OTHER RIGHTS
You have the right to access the information that we hold about you and to receive a copy. We do not usually charge you for copies of your information. If a charge is to be made, we will explain the reasons for this. We will provide a copy of your information within 28 days of receipt of a request and an explanation of your dental records should you require it.
You can also request us to:
Correct any information that you believe is inaccurate or incomplete. If we have disclosed that information to a third party, we will let them know about the change.
Erase some of the information that we hold. For legal reasons, we may be unable to erase certain information (for example, information about your dental treatment). However, we can delete some contact details and other non-clinical information if you ask us to.
Stop using your information. For example, sending you reminders for appointments or information about our service. Even if you have given us consent to send you marketing information, you may withdraw that consent at any time. You can also ask us to stop using your information if you believe that it is inaccurate or you believe we are using your information illegally.
Supply your information electronically to another dentist. If we are relying on your consent to use your personal information for a particular purpose, you may withdraw your consent at any time and we will stop using your information for that purpose. All requests should be made to the Practice NADINE BARRY, by phone, in writing or email.
The Practice Principals, Ben Griffith and John O'Leary, maintain a summary of all requests for access to records, disclosures, consent to disclosure and reasons for refusing access: refer to office document database.
IF YOU DO NOT AGREE
If you do not wish us to use your personal information to be used in the way that is described in this Notice, please discuss the matter with your dentist or, if you prefer, with the Practice Manager Nadine Barry on 020 8977 3746. If
you object to the way that we collect and use your information, we may not be able to continue to provide your dental care.
General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR):
Using or sharing your contact details
Here at the DENTAL CARE CENTRE your privacy comes first. We take your information seriously. We meet the high standard for data privacy introduced by the new European data protection law known as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)
There may be occasions where we feel it is necessary to contact you about the practice or your dental care. We will do this on the basis of legitimate interest. However we may also need to share your information with 3rd parties on the grounds of your legitimate interest. Examples of 3rd parties we may share your information with are:
Other Health Professionals caring for you
Private Dental Schemes
OUR Complaints Procedure:
We take complaints at The Dental Care Centre very seriously and try to ensure that all our patients are pleased with their experience of our service. If a patient does feel the need to complain, they will be dealt with courteously and promptly so that the matter is resolved as effectively and quickly as possible.
Our aim is to react to complaints in the way in which we would want our complaint about a service to be handled. We learn from every mistake that we make and we respond to customers’ concerns in a caring and sensitive way.
The person responsible for dealing with any complaint about the service which we provide Nadine Barry, Practice Manager.
If a patient complains on the telephone or in person, we will listen to their complaint and offer to refer him or her to the Practice Manager immediately. If the Practice Manager is not available at the time, then the patient will be informed when they will be able to talk to the Practice Manager and arrangements will be made for this to happen. The member of staff will take brief details of the complaint and pass them on to the Practice Manager. If we cannot arrange this within a reasonable period or if the patient does not wish to wait to discuss the matter, arrangements will be made for someone else to deal with it.
If the patient complains in writing or by email, it will be passed on immediately to the Practice Manager, Nadine Barry.
If a complaint is about any aspect of clinical care or associated charges it will normally be referred to the dentist concerned, unless the patient does not want this to happen.
We will aim to acknowledge the patient’s complaint in writing and enclose a copy of our practice complaints leaflet within five working days.
We will seek to investigate the complaint within ten working days of receipt to give an explanation of the circumstances which led to the complaint. We will offer to meet with the patient to attempt to resolve the complaint in an effective and timely manner. If the patient cannot meet with us for any reason, then we will attempt to talk to them on the telephone to resolve their complaint. If we are unable to investigate the complaint within ten working days we will notify the patient, giving reasons for the delay and a likely period within which the investigation will be completed.
We will contact the patient to confirm the decision about the complaint immediately after completing our investigation. This will normally be in writing.
Proper and comprehensive records are kept of any complaint received as well as any actions taken to improve services as a consequence of any complaint.
If a patient is not satisfied with the result of our practice complaints procedure then a complaint can then be made to:
NHS Richmond & Hounslow PALS on 0800 953 0363
The Care Quality Commission, Finsbury Tower, 103-105 Bunhill Row, London, EC1Y 8TG, telephone 03000 616161 - the general health regulator, with responsibility for maintaining standards in healthcare services.
The General Dental Council, 37 Wimpole Street, London, W1M 8DQ, telephone 020 82530800 - the dentists' regulatory body, which deals with complaints about professional misconduct.