BASHH/PHE advice regarding Freedom of Information request for clinic level data on STIs in children

10th March 2016

Dear Colleague

RE: Freedom of Information request for clinic level data on STIs in children

BASHH has been made aware that there have been a number of FOI requests to trusts in England requesting data about children and young people under 16 years attending sexual health services. The disclosure of clinic level data in this age group is of particular concern and may be problematic for several reasons:

  • Risk of deductive disclosure is high as the number of such patients in each centre is likely to be low;
  • Sensitivity of the information for the individual is high;
  • There is the expectation of confidentiality for individuals using the service;
  • Some cases may be part of active social service or police investigations of sexual abuse or assault;

 

PHE have prepared a national level response with anonymised data. Should you receive a request for this type of information please liaise with your Trust FOI office regarding local policy. If you elect to say that you are unable to provide clinic level data you can ask the requester to contact the PHE FOI office directly for the PHE national level data.

PHE can only respond to FOI requests which are sent directly to them.

Please direct any BASHH related enquiries to Elizabeth.foley@solent.nhs.uk

Elizabeth Foley
BASHH General Secretary

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