How to access your medical records — Scope | Disability forum
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How to access your medical records

wildlife Member Posts: 1,293 Pioneering
Hi Everyone, I found this on NHS website and thought it might be useful. In simple terms it is not up to the surgery whether or not you can access your own records. You have an absolute right to access them:       

There are two types of medical record you can ask to see:

  • medical records held by a healthcare provider that has treated you
  • a summary care record (SCR) created by your GP 

Medical records

Your medical record is a history of your healthcare, including treatments, medication, allergies, test results, X-rays and scans.

Whenever you visit an NHS service in England a medical record (also called a health record) is created.

This means medical information about you can be held in various places, such as your GP surgery, dental practice or hospital.

You have a legal right to apply for access to your medical records. You do not need to give a reason.

A request for your medical records should be made directly with the healthcare provider that provided the treatment, such as:

This is known as a Subject Access Request (SAR), as set out by the Data Protection Act of 1998.

Many healthcare providers have SAR forms that you can complete and return by email or by post. Here is an example of an SAR form on the North Bristol NHS Trust website.

You may have to pay a fee to access your medical records. Find out how much you'll have to pay to see your records.

An SAR should be met within 40 days. However, the healthcare provider should aim to get back to you within 21 days.

A SAR may not always be necessary because:

  • you may be able to approach the healthcare provider informally to ask to see your medical records
  • many GP surgeries now offer their patients access to their GP medical records online

Another person can access your health records but only with your permission. Find out how to access someone else’s health records.

Summary care record (SCR)

If you are registered with a GP practice in England your SCR is created automatically, unless you opted out.

Your SCR contains the following information: 

  • current medication
  • allergies and details of any previous bad reactions to medicines
  • name, address, date of birth and NHS number

You can also choose to include additional information in the SCR, such as details of long-term conditions and significant medical history.

Your SCR can be accessed by other healthcare providers to speed up your care and make sure you are given the right medicines and treatment.

GP practices are required to provide their patients online access to their SCR.


  • Sam_Alumni
    Sam_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 7,674 Disability Gamechanger
    Thanks so much for sharing this :)
    Senior online community officer
  • wildlife
    wildlife Member Posts: 1,293 Pioneering
    edited August 2017
    @Sam_Scope There have been cases reported on here of people being refused written evidence by their surgery claiming they are too busy to produce them. Or people have had to wait so long they've missed the DWP timescale for sending in evidence. This should never happen. 
  • jose2
    jose2 Member Posts: 126 Pioneering
    Just found this post today wildlife,you are a whizz!,it will come in handy all the information you have given,as getting my records at times has been very frustrating,and the ....... at atos have only awarded me PIP  for 3 years,so fore warned is fore armed, next time I'll bombard them with 25 years worth of my illnesses ,that's of course if I'm still around  at 72 years old.
  • maid08
    maid08 Member Posts: 307 Connected
    umm cpaita make a decision on youer health and puts it in a report to dwp wonder if u can ask capita for youer medical reports

  • Roland
    Roland Member Posts: 27 Courageous
    I don't think this applies to sexual health records, which are kept completely separate to general health records and are confidential to the sexual health clinic.  Having had to change clinics three times for my HIV treatment the records have not followed me and the new clinic has to start each time from scratch. Very frustrating and rather worrying as I can't remember all the treatments I have been on


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