The future of the Great North Care Record

View only records

Currently, your Great North Care Record is in a ‘read only’ state and allows hospital and other healthcare practitioners involved in your care to read the information held in your GP record.  In the future, the Great North Care Record will allow anyone treating you to input and add further information into your record.  In this way, everyone involved directly in treating you will be able to view and update the information about you, at the point of care.

Other organisations involved in your care

We are exploring allowing other organisations outside the NHS who may be involved in your care to have access to the Great North Care Record such as adult social care, or care homes. We are consulting with patients and conducting research to explore this further.

It’s your choice whether you allow other organisations to be able to view and update your patient records. Records would only be accessed with the appropriate safeguards in place, as in the NHS. Under data protection laws, you would have to opt in to information being shared in this way.

Using your information for research

In addition to direct care, we are also consulting with citizens about how, with your permission, the information in your medical record could be used to help researchers to make new discoveries about illnesses and develop better treatments.  Researchers often use large sets of data where personal details about you are removed. This is definitely useful but only to a certain extent since these data sets contain only limited amount of information. On the other hand, if the researchers know more about you, they can make better discoveries. For example, if  we know which patients have developed a particular illness then we want to be able to contact you so you can participate in clinical research.

We can only use this level of personal information for research with your explicit permission.

We are developing a privacy preferences prototype which would allow you to control who sees or doesn’t see your healthcare information.

We want to encourage as many people in our region to opt in to their information being used for research. The North East and North Cumbria is already a world leading place to do clinical research and we want to help researchers in our region and beyond.  If the local population allows researchers to access their information and even allow them to contact you to participate in research, we can improve not only our physical outcomes, but also help to improve and support the region as a leading place to conduct clinical research.

How do researchers use healthcare data?

This video explains the different types of healthcare information that researchers can access – and whether they need the permission from patients to access their medical information.