9. Seeking advice
If in doubt about any aspect of information sharing, you should seek appropriate advice. Further consultation may be necessary with those responsible for information or care governance. If possible, you should seek advice without disclosing any information that could identify the individual. It should be recorded if advice was sought, from whom and what the advice was, whether information is shared or not at that time.
Within health services, a Caldicott Guardian is a senior person appointed to ensure that personal information about those who use its services is used lawfully, ethically and appropriately. Caldicott Guardians provide leadership and informed guidance on complex matters involving confidentiality and information sharing (Caldicott Manual 2017).
Outwith health services, arrangements vary, and will depend on the size and nature of the organisation and the types of personal data they are processing, but there must be processes and policies in place for practitioners to refer to. No matter who is sharing the data robust policies and procedures should be in place. Organisations may benefit from joining a network or umbrella group that can provide support with information management processes and training. The ICO provide tools and guidance at Data sharing information hub.
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