Access to your social care records

This explains why we keep social care records, what sort of information the records contain and how you can arrange to see your records if you want to.

The Council's Adult Social Care services aim to protect and promote the wellbeing and rights of vulnerable people. We rely on receiving and sharing information so that we can look at your social care needs and then discuss with you the services that are available to meet them.

We do understand that for some people, giving even the most basic information about themselves is a very sensitive issue. We may also be given information about you by someone else, such as a member of your family or your doctor. We know that you quite rightly expect any information provided to be treated as confidential and we respect that.

What is in the records?

The type of information we keep will include details like your date of birth and your name and address. Depending upon the nature of the service that we provide we may also need to keep information of a more personal or sensitive nature like your personal circumstances, health, lifestyle and financial situation. We will also keep a record of meetings with you and others, any decisions made and services provided.

Sometimes these are kept in paper files or they could be held on a computer. Your records are always treated as confidential and are held securely and they can only be seen by the people who are directly concerned with assessing your needs or providing you with a service. We do not give them to anyone else unless we have your permission to do so. Some social care records are held for many years, others are destroyed after a period of time.

Can I see them?

You have a right to see your personal information under the Data Protection Act 1998. This means that when you make a request to the Data Protection Officer they will tell you whether or not we hold any personal information about you.

The Data Protection Officer is the person who deals with all the requests across the Council for anyone to see information that is held about them, and is responsible for making sure that this is dealt with properly. The Council is entitled to make a charge of £10 (for each application) for providing information. 

If you want to find out what information the Council holds about you then please contact us. We will ask you for some information in writing as we need to confirm your identity. This is to make sure that we do not release your data to anyone other than yourself. To assist you in making a request to see your personal information and to enable us to provide the information requested as quickly as possible, you can download and complete an application form online by following the link below.

What happens next?

Once we have received your letter or completed form, proof of your identity and any supporting information we need and the fee of £10, we will give you your personal information within 40 calendar days. Usually we will post copies to you. Where possible, information should be collected from the Civic Offices in Euclid Street. The Data Protection Officer will let you know when your information is ready to collect, or you can make arrangements to look at your information at our offices in the presence of a member of staff.

However, there are certain situations where we may not be able to let you have some or all of the information, for example if it mentions someone else, if giving you the information may cause you harm, or if it is needed for the prevention or detection of a crime. If we are unable to give you access to some information, we will normally tell you why.   

Useful contact

Swindon Direct
Address: Wat Tyler House, Princes Street, Swindon SN1 2JH
Phone: 01793 445500
Email: customerservices@swindon.gov.uk