Due to our pandemic response requirements, customers are advised that there may be delays in handling requests for information made under the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act, Environmental Information Regulations (EIR) or the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) for subject access requests. We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.

We have had to change the way that some of our services operate to meet the guidelines set out by the government in response to the Coronavirus pandemic.

These privacy notices set out how we process your personal information when dealing with COVID-19 for the following activities:

This notice describes how we may use your information to protect you and others during the COVID-19 outbreak.

The health and social care system is facing significant pressures due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Health and care information is essential to deliver care to individuals, to support health and social care services and to protect public health. Information will also be vital in researching, monitoring, tracking and managing the outbreak. In the current emergency, it has become even more important to share health and care information across relevant organisations.

Existing law which allows confidential patient information to be used and shared appropriately and lawfully in a public health emergency is being used during this outbreak. Using this law the Secretary of State has required NHS Digital; NHS England and Improvement; arms-length bodies (such as Public Health England); local authorities; health organisations and GPs to share confidential patient information to respond to the COVID-19 outbreak. Any information used or shared during the COVID-19 outbreak will be limited to the period of the outbreak unless there is another legal basis to use the data. Further

information is available on GOV.UK along with some FAQs on this law.

In order to look after your health and care needs, we may share your confidential information with staff in other health and care providers, for example, GP practices, hospitals and community or voluntary sector organisations. We may also use the details we have to send public health messages to you, either by phone, text or email.

We will also be required to share personal/confidential information with health and care organisations and other bodies engaged in disease surveillance for the purposes of protecting public health, providing healthcare services to the public and monitoring and managing the outbreak. Further information is available about how health and care data is being used and shared by other NHS and social care organisations in a variety of ways to support the COVID-19 response.

NHS England and Improvement and NHSX have developed a single, secure store to gather data from across the health and care system to inform the COVID-19 response. This includes data already collected by NHS England, NHS Improvement, Public Health England and NHS Digital. New data will include 999 call data, data about hospital occupancy and A&E capacity data as well as data provided by patients themselves. All the data held in the platform is subject to strict controls that meet the requirements of data protection legislation.

In such circumstances where you tell us you’re experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, we may need to collect specific health data about you. Where we need to do so, we will not collect more information than we require and we will ensure that any information collected is treated with the appropriate safeguards.

We may amend this privacy notice at any time so please review it frequently. The date at the top of this page will be amended each time this notice is updated.

What information do we need?

Information has been provided to us from central government which includes the names and contact details (address and telephone numbers) of those people who need to shield as they are at greater risk should they contract COVID-19. When we speak to you, we will collect further information about your situation, including whether you need any essential items.

Where a telephone number is not provided, we will take steps using other sources of information held within the Council, such as our Council Tax records to locate a number.

Why we need it?

One of the requirements placed on local authorities as part of the pandemic response is that contact is made with those people who need to shield to ensure that they are OK and have enough essential supplies.

Where we take steps to locate a contact number via different council records, we do this in order to protect your vital interests so we can make every effort to check you are OK.

Therefore under the GDPR, we are processing your information on the basis that we’re carrying out a task in the public interest and to protect the vital interests of those more vulnerable to COVID-19.

Do we share your information?

When we call you we will ask you whether you would like us to pass your details on to any other agency, such as the Community Development Trust or Adult Services.

If we are concerned for your immediate safety in which case information will be shared with the appropriate agency without your consent.

We will also share information with GP practices in order to prevent you from being contacted a number of times about being shielded.

How long do we keep your information?

We will hold your information on a secure database for as long as we need it. Your personal information will not be subject to any overseas transfers.