How to get your health data in the UK

Mar 15, 2022

As a patient in the UK, you have the legal right to access your medical records from healthcare providers. This right is guaranteed by the Data Protection Act 2018, the UK GDPR, and NHS guidelines.


You can ask Livv Health to retrieve your records for you, or follow the following step-by-step to do it yourself:


Step 1: Access Public Health Data on NHS App

In the UK, you can access some of your public health data through the NHS App. This includes your COVID-19 vaccination status, GP medical records, hospital appointments, and more. While it doesn't include your complete records, it's a good starting point. Download the app and log in with your NHS login to view available health information.


Step 2: Identify Healthcare Providers

List all the healthcare facilities and providers that may have your medical information, such as your GP surgery, hospitals, clinics, specialists, and diagnostic centers.


Step 3: Contact Each Provider

Contact each healthcare provider on your list. You can request access to your records in person, by phone, mail, or email. Clearly state that you want to access your complete medical records under your rights in the Data Protection Act 2018 and UK GDPR. Use the template request form provided below.


Step 4: Verify Your Identity

The provider will likely ask you to verify your identity to ensure they release records to the correct person. Be prepared to provide identification and fill out any necessary forms.


Step 5: Choose Access Method

Inform the provider how you wish to access your records. You can request to view the records in person at their facility or obtain copies. If requesting copies, specify the desired format (physical or digital).


Step 6: Pay Any Fees

The NHS can charge up to £50 for copies of paper records or up to £10 for digital records. However, many providers will provide records for free. Remember to ask about any costs upfront.


Step 7: Await Response

Providers should respond to your request within 1 month. They may extend this by another 2 months if your request is complex. Follow up if you don't hear back within this timeframe.


Step 8: Review and Store your Records safely

Upon receiving your records, carefully review them for errors or missing information. Securely store the records as part of your personal medical history file. You can download the Livv Health app to protect and organize your health information effortlessly.

Remember, while some health data is accessible through the NHS App, it doesn't replace your right to obtain your complete medical records. Use the template below to assert that right with each of your healthcare providers.


Template Request Form for Medical Records in the UK

[Your Full Name]
[Your Address]
[Your Phone Number]
[Your Email]

[Date]

[Healthcare Provider Name]
[Healthcare Provider Address]

Dear [Healthcare Provider],

I am writing to request access to my complete medical records maintained by your institution. This request is being made under my rights in the Data Protection Act 2018 and UK GDPR Article 15.


Please provide me with:

1. A full copy of all medical records you hold about me, including but not limited to clinical notes, test results, imaging studies, referrals, and correspondence.

2. An explanation of any codes or abbreviations used in the records.

I would prefer to receive the records in [specify format - electronic, hard copy, etc.]. Please inform me in advance of any fees associated with providing the records.

If you need any additional information from me, please contact me at [your phone number] or [your email].

Thank you for your assistance. I look forward to receiving my complete medical records within one month, as required by law.


Sincerely,

[Your Signature]
[Your Name]


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