Introduction and guide to the scheme

Introduction

This Publication Scheme is a complete guide to the information routinely published by the North West Ambulance Service NHS Trust. It is a description of the information about our Trust which we make publicly available. We shall review the Scheme at regular intervals and monitor how it is operating. It is important to us that this Scheme meets your needs and we have designed it to be a route map so that you can find information about the Trust easily.

Under Section 19 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000, the Trust has a legal duty to adopt and maintain a Publication Scheme for the publication of North West Ambulance Service NHS Trust information. The purpose of the Act is to promote greater openness by public authorities.

The Publication Scheme will help you to find all the information that the Trust publishes. The Freedom of Information Act does not change the right of patients to protection of their patient confidentiality in accordance with Article 8 of the Human Rights Convention, the Data Protection Act and at common law.

Maintaining the legal right to patient confidentiality continues to be an important commitment on our part. To help with this, we have appointed someone who is called a Caldicott Guardian, and who has responsibility to ensure the protection of patient confidentiality throughout the Trust in accordance with your legal rights. In our Trust the Caldicott Guardian is David Ratcliffe.

Right of Access to Information

The Freedom of Information Act recognises that as a member of the public, you have the right to know how public services such as the NHS are organised and run, how much they cost and how you can make complaints if you need to. You have the right to know which services are being provided, the targets that are being set, the standards of services that are expected and the results achieved.

The Trust is obliged to respond to requests about the information which it holds and is recorded in any form and it will create a right of access to that information. The rights to request and access this information are subject to some exemptions which the Trust has to take into consideration before deciding what information can be released. You will also find Trust publications on the internet by visiting our Publications page.

Under the Data Protection Act 1998, you are also entitled to access your clinical records or any other personal information held about you and you can contact:

Chris Gresty
Head of Health Informatics
North West Ambulance Service NHS Trust
Ladybridge Hall HQ
Chorley New Road
Heaton
Bolton
BL1 5DD
 
The Environmental Information Regulations provide similar access to environmental information as under the Freedom of Information Act 2000.

Cost of Information

For the most part, we will charge you only for hard copies or copying onto media (e.g. CD ROM). Some information is available free, but for others there may be a charge. The charges will vary according to how information is made available and will be detailed to each individual on application depending upon the method of appropriate delivery. Leaflets and brochures including annual reports, business plans etc are provided free of charge.

The charges will be reviewed regularly.

Copyright

The material available through this Publication Scheme is subject to the Trust's copyright unless otherwise indicated. Unless expressly indicated on the material to the contrary, it may be reproduced free of charge in any format or medium, provided it is reproduced accurately and not used in a misleading manner. Where any of the copyright items in this Scheme are being re-published or copied to others, you must identify the source of the material and acknowledge the copyright status. Permission to reproduce material does not extend to any material accessed through the Publication Scheme that is the copyright of third parties. You must obtain authorisation to reproduce such material from the copyright holders concerned. For OPSI Guidance Notes on a range of copyright issues, see the Legislation website.