Privacy Statement

Galway Primary Care provides a full range of services at each of our medical centres. It is our privilege to be involved in your care.

Data (Joint) Controller: 
Dr D C Higgins Principle Partner
Dr Brian Higgins Principle Partner
Tuam Road, Galway

This practice wants to ensure the highest standard of Medical care for our patients. We understand that a General Practice is a trusted community governed by an ethic of privacy and confidentiality. Our approach is consistent with the Medical Council guidelines and the privacy principles of the Data Protection Regulations. It is not possible to undertake medical care without collecting and processing personal data and data concerning health. In fact, to do so would be in breach of the Medical Council’s ‘Guide to Professional Conduct and Ethics for Doctors’. This leaflet is about advising you of our policies and practices on dealing with your medical information.

Legal Basis for processing your Data

This practice has voluntarily signed up for the ICGP Data Protection Guidelines for GPs. The processing of personal data in general practice is necessary in order to protect the vital interests of the patient and for the provision of health care and public health. In most circumstances we hold your data until 8 years after your death or 8 years since your last contact with the practice. However there are exceptions to this rule.

Managing your Information

In order to provide for your care we need to collect and keep information about you and you health on our records.
This information is retained securely, we will only keep information that is necessary. We ask you to inform us about any relevant changes that’s we should know about. This would include treatments, investigations, change of address or phone numbers.
All persons in the practice (not already covered by a professional confidentiality code) sign a confidentiality agreement.

Category of Personal Data processed by Galway Primary Care

Administrative : name, address, contact details, date of appointment

To support the administration of patient care in general practice

Lawfulness of Processing
Necessary in order to Protect the vital interests of the patient


Medial Record: GMS Number, PPS, date of birth, religion, sexual orientation, gender, family members, family history, contact details of next of kin, contact details of carers, vaccination details, medication details, allergy details, current and past medical and surgical history, genetic data, lab test results, imaging test results, near patient test results, ECGs, Ultrasound scan images, other date required to provide medical care.

To provide patient care in general practice.
For specific schemes such as childhood immunisation, mother and child scheme, cervical screening, department of social protection.

Lawfulness of Processing
Necessary in order to Protect the vital interests of the patient


Account Details: Record billable services provided, patient name, address, contact details, billing and payment record for GMS and Private Patients

To provide a service and billing and submission to the PCRS

Lawfulness of Processing
Compliance with legal obligation with Revenue, Medical and Legal Obligation in relation to getting paid for providing service.


Staff may have access to patient records to perform their tasks or for proper functioning of the practice i.e

  • Generating Sick Certs
  • Typing Referrals
  • Opening Letters from Hospitals/Consultants/ Health Professionals
  • Scanning documents to Patients File
  • Downloading Lab Results
  • Photocopying/Printing
  • Checking for laboratory/radiology/hospital results
  • Other activities related to the support of medical care appropriate for practice support staff.

All persons in the practice (not already covered by a professional confidentiality code) sign a confidentiality agreement.


Disclosure of Information to other Health and Social Care Professionals

We may need to pass some of this information on to other Health Professionals, these are also legally bound to treat your information with the same duty of care and confidentiality that we do.
Recipients with whom we share personal data:

Categories of Recipient Description

Health and Social Care Providers
Other GPs, HSE, Voluntary Hospitals, Private Hospitals and Clinics, Private Consultants, Physiotherapists, Occupational Therapists, Palliative Care Services, Out of Hour Services, Pharmacies, Nursing Homes, Counselling Services, Diagnostic Imaging Services, Hospital Laboratories, Practice Support Staff, GP Locums and other healthcare providers.

Data Processors with a Contract
GP Practice Software Vendors (Clanwilliam Health- Socrates), Online Data Backup Companies (Quicktec IT Support) Healthlink

Legal Arrangements
Coroner, Revenue, Social Protection, Medical Council

Public Health
Infectious Diseases Notification, Influenza Surveillance, National Cancer Registry and other National Registries.

Third Parties (explicit patients Consent sought)
Solicitors, Insurance Companies, Health Insurance Companies, Banks.