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  • FIRST POST
    • bcal
    • By bcal 9th Feb 18, 8:46 PM
    • 7Posts
    • 2Thanks
    bcal
    data protection?
    • #1
    • 9th Feb 18, 8:46 PM
    data protection? 9th Feb 18 at 8:46 PM
    hi there. is an employer allowed to call a hospital to check if someone is an inpatient please? if an employer does call a hospital and asks if a certain person is an inpatient, are the going against any data protection laws? this isn't about anyone in particular, just a general wondering. thank you
Page 1
    • sangie595
    • By sangie595 9th Feb 18, 8:52 PM
    • 4,553 Posts
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    sangie595
    • #2
    • 9th Feb 18, 8:52 PM
    • #2
    • 9th Feb 18, 8:52 PM
    They can call anyone they like. I'd be more worried if the hospital said anything, because that would be a serious breach of the law! That said, if anyone was theoretically considering lying, that would be a very daft idea.
    • bcal
    • By bcal 9th Feb 18, 9:10 PM
    • 7 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    bcal
    • #3
    • 9th Feb 18, 9:10 PM
    • #3
    • 9th Feb 18, 9:10 PM
    its for a care worker who has a chest infection, not someone i know personally though. she was admitted yesterday and stayed overnight. she informed her employer that she couldnt work due to being in hospital, she was discharged today but her employer rang her this eve and said she had already rang the hospital to check if shes there or not. i understand the fact that if information is given it goes against the data protection act but is the employer commiting an offense in calling the hospital ot is that just a moral issue please? nobody lied about being ill though
    • nicechap
    • By nicechap 9th Feb 18, 9:21 PM
    • 1,108 Posts
    • 2,363 Thanks
    nicechap
    • #4
    • 9th Feb 18, 9:21 PM
    • #4
    • 9th Feb 18, 9:21 PM
    its for a care worker who has a chest infection, not someone i know personally though. she was admitted yesterday and stayed overnight. she informed her employer that she couldnt work due to being in hospital, she was discharged today but her employer rang her this eve and said she had already rang the hospital to check if shes there or not. i understand the fact that if information is given it goes against the data protection act but is the employer commiting an offense in calling the hospital ot is that just a moral issue please? nobody lied about being ill though
    Originally posted by bcal
    What's the real issue here?

    Would they prefer if the employer didn't care enough to enquire about their staff when they're unwell?

    Perhaps the employer are worried the carer has been exposed to something nasty from the person being cared for? or might be too infectious to come back to work?
    Quote was right and saw into the future.
    • bcal
    • By bcal 9th Feb 18, 9:27 PM
    • 7 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    bcal
    • #5
    • 9th Feb 18, 9:27 PM
    • #5
    • 9th Feb 18, 9:27 PM
    its simply a case of wondering if it's against data protection, i've said it as it is. no hidden agenda, no reading between the lines, just curious as th whether its a data protection issue by the employer or a moral one....i hope this clears up any confusion surrounding my question
    • sangie595
    • By sangie595 9th Feb 18, 9:28 PM
    • 4,553 Posts
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    sangie595
    • #6
    • 9th Feb 18, 9:28 PM
    • #6
    • 9th Feb 18, 9:28 PM
    its for a care worker who has a chest infection, not someone i know personally though. she was admitted yesterday and stayed overnight. she informed her employer that she couldnt work due to being in hospital, she was discharged today but her employer rang her this eve and said she had already rang the hospital to check if shes there or not. i understand the fact that if information is given it goes against the data protection act but is the employer commiting an offense in calling the hospital ot is that just a moral issue please? nobody lied about being ill though
    Originally posted by bcal
    Why on earth would the employer be committing an offence by asking after their employee? It isn't even a moral issue. I phoned the local hospital last year asking after my friend. They wouldn't tell me (so I side stepped that by other routes). How can I possibly have broken the law by picking up the phone her and asking a question? This isn't 1984.

    If she's ill, what on earth is the issue here? You don't even know her!
    • bcal
    • By bcal 9th Feb 18, 9:34 PM
    • 7 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    bcal
    • #7
    • 9th Feb 18, 9:34 PM
    • #7
    • 9th Feb 18, 9:34 PM
    its a friend of a friend. no need to get all het up my dear. am i not allowed to be curious. actually, the employer was trying to get said carer to go back to this weekend but already knew the reason for not being able to return to work. care and consideration aside for the employer towards the carer....the question still stands....does anyone answering actually know for certain if this is a data protection breech please?
    • Takeaway_Addict
    • By Takeaway_Addict 9th Feb 18, 9:35 PM
    • 5,799 Posts
    • 6,684 Thanks
    Takeaway_Addict
    • #8
    • 9th Feb 18, 9:35 PM
    • #8
    • 9th Feb 18, 9:35 PM
    its simply a case of wondering if it's against data protection, i've said it as it is. no hidden agenda, no reading between the lines, just curious as th whether its a data protection issue by the employer or a moral one....i hope this clears up any confusion surrounding my question
    Originally posted by bcal
    Is it though? At first you said it was a general wondering and suddenly its about someone you know....

    What to believe!
    Don't trust a forum for advice. Get proper paid advice. Any advice given should always be checked
    • bcal
    • By bcal 9th Feb 18, 9:38 PM
    • 7 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    bcal
    • #9
    • 9th Feb 18, 9:38 PM
    • #9
    • 9th Feb 18, 9:38 PM
    i quickly realised that the answers i was recieving meant i had to give as much information as possible. so do we know the answer yet please?
    • nicechap
    • By nicechap 9th Feb 18, 9:41 PM
    • 1,108 Posts
    • 2,363 Thanks
    nicechap
    its a friend of a friend. no need to get all het up my dear. am i not allowed to be curious. actually, the employer was trying to get said carer to go back to this weekend but already knew the reason for not being able to return to work. care and consideration aside for the employer towards the carer....the question still stands....does anyone answering actually know for certain if this is a data protection breech please?
    Originally posted by bcal
    Have you tried asking the ICO?
    Quote was right and saw into the future.
    • LilElvis
    • By LilElvis 9th Feb 18, 9:41 PM
    • 3,557 Posts
    • 9,804 Thanks
    LilElvis
    Why on earth would the employer be committing an offence by asking after their employee? It isn't even a moral issue. I phoned the local hospital last year asking after my friend. They wouldn't tell me (so I side stepped that by other routes). How can I possibly have broken the law by picking up the phone her and asking a question? This isn't 1984.

    If she's ill, what on earth is the issue here? You don't even know her!
    Originally posted by sangie595
    Quite. The hospital would almost certainly have given you chapter and verse about your friend's condition had you claimed to be a relative. They just take your word for it. My MIL has been to A&E 3 times in the last month and admitted once, 2 different hospitals, and every time I've spoken to nursing staff and doctors concerning her condition with no questioning as to whether I was who I claimed to be - I just had to know her name. Finding out whether someone is an inpatient simply involves calling the reception desk, giving the person's name and they will gladly tell you which ward they are on and offer to transfer your call.
    • bcal
    • By bcal 9th Feb 18, 9:47 PM
    • 7 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    bcal
    not yet, we only found this out a few hours ago, i will pass that point over about the ICO though as she can call them herself, thank you
    • nicechap
    • By nicechap 9th Feb 18, 9:50 PM
    • 1,108 Posts
    • 2,363 Thanks
    nicechap
    not yet, we only found this out a few hours ago, i will pass that point over about the ICO though as she can call them herself, thank you
    Originally posted by bcal
    When the ICO stop laughing, do come back and tell us what they say.
    Quote was right and saw into the future.
    • bcal
    • By bcal 9th Feb 18, 9:51 PM
    • 7 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    bcal
    haha, i might just
    • sangie595
    • By sangie595 9th Feb 18, 9:55 PM
    • 4,553 Posts
    • 7,642 Thanks
    sangie595
    its a friend of a friend. no need to get all het up my dear. am i not allowed to be curious. actually, the employer was trying to get said carer to go back to this weekend but already knew the reason for not being able to return to work. care and consideration aside for the employer towards the carer....the question still stands....does anyone answering actually know for certain if this is a data protection breech please?
    Originally posted by bcal
    You have been told. No. Asking a question is not a breach of the law, nor of morals. Asking a question is legal.

    If the hospital responds, that might be a breach of data protection.

    I am shocked if a hospital gave out any information based on someone knowing a name. In our local trusts you may know as many names as you like, and call as many reception desks as you like - they will quite rightly tell you nothing at all. Not even if that person is there.
    • Comms69
    • By Comms69 9th Feb 18, 10:04 PM
    • 2,970 Posts
    • 2,938 Thanks
    Comms69
    Typically if a hospital gets such a call, the patient will be notified and asked if they consent to information being given out.
    • nicechap
    • By nicechap 9th Feb 18, 10:07 PM
    • 1,108 Posts
    • 2,363 Thanks
    nicechap
    The OP is asking about whether the employer, not the hospital, has breached DPA.
    Quote was right and saw into the future.
    • LilElvis
    • By LilElvis 9th Feb 18, 10:11 PM
    • 3,557 Posts
    • 9,804 Thanks
    LilElvis
    You have been told. No. Asking a question is not a breach of the law, nor of morals. Asking a question is legal.

    If the hospital responds, that might be a breach of data protection.

    I am shocked if a hospital gave out any information based on someone knowing a name. In our local trusts you may know as many names as you like, and call as many reception desks as you like - they will quite rightly tell you nothing at all. Not even if that person is there.
    Originally posted by sangie595
    So how does a relative prove that they are who they say they are? In the last couple of years my MIL has been at Wickham, Wexham Park, Amersham, Hammersmith, Ascot plus three private hospitals (including one in Harley Street). I've called each and every one for information about her condition and have been given it by all of them with no question.
    • LilElvis
    • By LilElvis 9th Feb 18, 10:14 PM
    • 3,557 Posts
    • 9,804 Thanks
    LilElvis
    Typically if a hospital gets such a call, the patient will be notified and asked if they consent to information being given out.
    Originally posted by Comms69
    Not my experience when my MIL has been taken to A&E by ambulance in the last month. Two different hospitals, though the same trust.
    • sangie595
    • By sangie595 9th Feb 18, 11:07 PM
    • 4,553 Posts
    • 7,642 Thanks
    sangie595
    So how does a relative prove that they are who they say they are? In the last couple of years my MIL has been at Wickham, Wexham Park, Amersham, Hammersmith, Ascot plus three private hospitals (including one in Harley Street). I've called each and every one for information about her condition and have been given it by all of them with no question.
    Originally posted by LilElvis
    That is not relevant. The hospitals failed in respect of their duties under data protection law. The fact they did that doesn't mean they did the right thing. You could have been anyone. You could have been someone she didn't want to know. Their responsibility was to her and her protection - not to you.

    I am currently waiting for a hospital admittance. They have already asked me - who is my next of kin and who may they talk to; and how do they contact them. That is exactly what they should have done.

    Maybe it's ok by you that you can go into hospital and anyone can phone up and claim to be your sister and get private and confidential information about you without having to prove who they are. But the law doesn't agree with you that it's ok. That's the difference.
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