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Chamber and committees

Question ref. S6W-08188
Asked by: Oliver Mundell, Dumfriesshire, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 22 April 2022

Question

To ask the Scottish Government how NHS Scotland makes patient records available in the event that patients require NHS treatment elsewhere in the UK.

Current status: Answered by Humza Yousaf on 12 May 2022


Answer

The exchange of factually accurate patient information is pivotal to the delivery of high quality, safe, patient centred healthcare whether it takes place locally, regionally, nationally in Scotland or elsewhere in the UK. Normal practice would be that where a patient is referred by a specialist team in Scotland to a specialist team in another part of the UK, the clinician responsible for their care would write a formal referral letter which would include details of the patients diagnosis, investigations already undertaken, treatments pursued so far and any proposed treatment plan or specific request of the team to which they are referring. It is also often the case that the referring clinician may provide some further detail as part of a Multidisciplinary Team Discussion, Virtual Consultation or telephone call.

On the occasion that the treatment is unplanned, the NHS facility providing the treatment should contact the individual’s GP Practice, in Scotland, directly to exchange key information from their patient record. NHS National Services Scotland (NSS) are available to support Scottish practices and the NHS in England, Wales and Northern Ireland to facilitate the sharing of records and or important information about the patient.

Systems integration and providing greater access for the public to their health and care data is a priority for Scottish Government and our ambitions are set out in our Digital Health and Care Strategy which was published in October 2022 and available at: https://www.gov.scot/publications/scotlands-digital-health-care-strategy/