Caretree is subject to and registered under the Data Protection Act 2018.
Your confidentiality and privacy is very important to us, and we take every step to ensure your information is safeguarded.
Our staff are trained to respect confidentiality and sign a confidentiality agreement when joining Caretree. Your information will not be discussed with another Service User, Friend, Neighbour or Acquaintance, although there may be situations where information needs to be shared to ensure your safety or the safety of others . Wherever possible this will be done with your knowledge and consent.
The following sections describe the data we will hold about you, how we use, share and store it, and what your rights are.
Information About You
We will hold personal confidential information about you which will be used to support delivery of high quality care. It is important for us to have a complete picture of you and your medical history as this information assists staff involved in your care to deliver care safely and effectively and to produce appropriate care plans to meet your needs. It also helps us to communicate effectively and accurately with other healthcare professionals.
This information we hold includes:
- Basic details, such as name, address, date of birth, next of kin.
- Medical history including allergies, health conditions and disabilities.
- Information from people who care for you and know you well, such as health professionals and relatives.
- Information is collected in a number of ways, via healthcare professionals (e.g. GP, District Nurse), referral details from Social Services or directly given by you or close relatives.
- It may also include personal sensitive information such as sexuality, race, your religion or beliefs.
- Details and records of the care we have provided, including, depending on the level of care in your care plan, notes and reports about your health, medication, continence and nutrition.
- Invoice and payment records for non-Social Service customers
We use this information:
- To help inform decisions that we make about your care.
- To ensure that the activities in your care plan are safe and effective.
- To work effectively with other organisations/professionals who are involved in your care.
- To ensure our services can meet future needs.
- To review care provided to ensure it is of the highest standard possible.
- To train our staff.
- To ensure the staff have the information they need to perform safe care.
Storage And Retention
The data we hold on you is held in four ways;
- In the file kept at your house. This is for records and data that is required by the carers providing your care.
- In a paper file kept in our office. This is for records that we need access to so we can deliver safe care.
- On our secure electronic management system. We hold records on your contact details, scheduling, invoicing and payments and notes about your care or any concerns. This allows it to be accessed by all appropriate staff. Only information required by the staff member is accessible to them. For example, carers are only able to see care plans and schedule information, and only for the clients they are due to see.
- Our Archiving. This is where we keep old records and paper files that are not needed immediately.
- When you stop using our service, we will archive all paper records we hold on you and store it securely for six years. The data will then be shredded.
Electronic data will be archived and maintained for six years, or ten years if any health and safety issues have occurred that could result in a future claim against our public liability insurance. After this period, the data will then be deleted.
Sharing of Information
We communicate changes to your needs and relevant information about your care to our staff via our secure electronic management system and via email. We also write a weekly ‘newsletter’ which provides updates and reminders about changes to our Service Users. This information is kept strictly within Caretree.
We will share your personal information outside of Caretree with;
- any persons that have Power of Attorney.
- your next of kin and/or family members if you agree to do so at assessment or any time thereafter. You have the right to remove this consent at any point.
We may disclose appropriate data to other healthcare professionals for the express purpose of delivering safe personalised care. For example, we may disclose information about pressure sores to a District Nurse, your medication history to a GP or medical history to Ambulance staff in an emergency.
If your care is provisioned by Social Services, we are contracted to provide them access to all of the data we hold about you.
As part of the inspection process by Social Services (if you were referred by them) and our governing body, the Care Quality Commission (CQC), your data and records may be checked to ensure that our care package complies with legislation and their quality rules. We may also disclose your contact details to the CQC for the purposes of allowing them to contact you for quality surveys.
If we believe you are at risk of harm, we may disclose relevant information to appropriate bodies, such as Oxfordshire Safeguarding or in extreme cases, the police
We will never disclose any of your information to non-healthcare professionals or healthcare professionals not involved in your care without your express permission.
If you elect to pay for your services by Direct Debit, your bank account, sort code, account name and the address that invoices are sent to will be stored by our Direct Debit Bureau Company purely for the purposes of collecting fees.
Clients that are referred by Social Services have their telephone number and care visits recorded on an external system for the purposes of recording call times and calculating charges. This data is also available to Social Services.
You have the right to request a copy of all the data we hold on you. Please contact us if you wish to discuss this further.
If you feel any of the data we hold about you is incorrect, you have the right for this data to be amended.
You also have the right to remove your consent at any point. Of course, this may prevent us providing further care to you.