From May 2018 Europe’s data protection rules will undergo their biggest changes in two decades. Since they were created in the 1990s, the amount of digital information we create, capture, and store has vastly increased. Simply put, the old regime was no longer fit for purpose.
The solution is the mutually agreed European General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which will come into force on May 25th, 2018 and become part of Law. It will change how businesses and public-sector organisations can handle the information of customers.
GDPR means that we at Tooth Club will be more accountable for handling of people’s personal information and as such we have updated our data protection policies.
Data Protection Code of Practice
Our data protection code of practice lays out our procedures that ensure Tooth Club and our employees comply with The Data Protection Law, 2001 and The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) (Regulation (EU) 2016/679)
What personal data do we hold?
To provide patients with a high standard of dental care and attention, we need to hold their personal information. This personal data can include:
- Past and current medical and dental condition; personal details such as age, address, telephone number and general medical practitioner
- Radiographs, clinical photographs and study models
- Information about their treatment that we have provided or propose and its cost
- Notes of conversations or incidents that might occur for which a record needs to be kept
- Records of consent to treatment
- Any correspondence relating to them and other health care professionals, for example in the hospital or Medical Specialist Group.
Why do we hold information about you?
We need to keep comprehensive and accurate personal data about patients to provide you with safe and appropriate dental care. We will ask you yearly to update your medical history and contact details.
We will retain your dental records while you are a practice patient and after you cease to be a patient, for at least eleven years, or for children until age 25, whichever is the longer.
Security of information
Personal data about you is held in the practice’s computer system and/or in a locked manual filing system. The information is only accessible to authorized team members. Our computer system has secure audit trails and we back up information routinely.
Disclosure of information
To provide proper and safe dental care we may need to disclose personal information about you to:
- Your general medical practitioner
- Scanning and X-ray facility units
- Other health professionals caring for you
- Social Security Authority
- Private dental schemes of which you are a member
- Medical Specialist Group
- Agents and Third parties as required by legal and law
Disclosure will take place on a ‘need-to-know’ basis. Only those individuals/organisations who need to know to provide care for you and for the proper administration of Government (whose personnel are covered by strict confidentiality rules) will be given the information.
In very limited circumstances or when required by law or a court order, personal data may have to be disclosed to a third party not connected with your health care. In all other situations, disclosure that is not covered by this Code of Practice will only occur when we have your specific consent. Where possible you will be informed of these requests for disclosure.
Access to your records
You have the right of access to the data that we hold about you and to receive a copy. Parents may access their child’s records if this is in the child’s best interests and not contrary to a competent child’s wishes. Formal applications for access must be in writing to The Practice Manager.
If you do not agree
If you do not wish personal data that we hold about you to be disclosed or used in the way that is described in this Code of Practice, please discuss the matter with your dentist. You have the right to object.
You have a right to withdraw your consent at any time, however this will not be retrospective.