Patients encouraged to share more information to help improve care

Patients living in Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland are being encouraged to share more information about their health and preferences to help doctors and nurses treat them.

Consenting to an ‘Enhanced Summary Care Record’ means patients can receive better, quicker care if healthcare is needed away from their usual GP surgery, such as in an emergency, on holiday, when their normal surgery is closed, at hospital clinics, and when visiting a pharmacy.

The rate at which patients are consenting to have an ‘Enhanced Summary Care Record’ has trebled in the last month. Over the last four weeks, 13,000 patients signed up for an ‘Enhanced Summary Care Record’. Previously 1,000 patients were signing up per week.

Most patients in England already have a ‘core’ Summary Care Record which only makes limited information from a patient’s GP record available to other health professionals, such as current medications, allergies, and bad reactions to medicines.

But health and social care leads across Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland are recommending that all patients consent to the new ‘Enhanced Summary Care Record’, which can also include details of illnesses and health problems, past operations and vaccinations, treatment preferences, information about the kind of support needed, and who should be contacted if more information is required.

Dr Andy Ker, Clinical Vice-Chair at East Leicestershire and Rutland Clinical Commissioning Group said: “It’s really pleasing that more patients are signing up for an Enhanced Summary Care Record.

“Doctors and nurses treating you in hospital do not routinely have access to your GP medical record. By consenting to an Enhanced Summary Care Record you are enabling this access so you can help them treat you quicker and more effectively. Completing the form will only take a couple of minutes but it could end up saving your life.”

Kim Marshal-Nichols, Chair of The Hedges Medical Centre Patient Participation Group, said: “As patients it is frustrating to have to repeat our stories every time we have an appointment. I think it’s a very good idea to consent to an Enhanced Summary Care Record.”

Over 42,000 patients in Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland have signed up for an ‘Enhanced Summary Care Record’ so far.

A form to provide consent for an ‘Enhanced Summary Care Record’ can be downloaded online. The form should be returned to patients’ GP practice reception.

The information will be managed securely in line with the NHS Care Records Guarantee. The Record will only be accessed by doctors and nurses if consent is provided by the patient, unless they are unconscious or unable to communicate and they believe that accessing the record is in the patient’s best interest.

For more information click here or speak to your GP Practice.