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Revised guidance for doctors on confidentiality – have your say

The public consultation on the revised draft of our guidance on confidentiality closed on the 19 February 2016.

Our current Confidentiality guidance was published in 2009. Over the past year, we have been reviewing it to make sure that it is clear, helpful, relevant to doctors’ needs and compatible with the law throughout the UK. We have also reviewed the seven explanatory statements that give more detailed advice on how to apply the principles in the confidentiality guidance to situations that doctors often encounter, or find hard to deal with, and the guidance on confidentiality issues contained in our publication 0-18 years: guidance for all doctors.

You can read more about the process of developing the revised draft on our confidentiality review page.

Our guidance is intended mainly for doctors, but it can also help patients, the public and other health and social care staff to understand what they can expect from doctors. We are therefore keen to hear a wide range of views on the revised draft guidance during the consultation.

How you can take part

You can take part by completing an online questionnaire on our consultation website.

Alternatively you can provide your comments by filling in a pdf version of the questionnaire, and sending it to us at

Please note:

Adobe Acrobat Reader is no longer compatible with Google Chrome, FireFox and Microsoft Edge(Window’s 10). If you are using these browsers, save a copy of the pdf and email your response as an attachment or alternatively use another browser.

The explanatory statements are about:

  • Patients’ fitness to drive and reporting concerns to the DVLA or DVA
  • Disclosing information for employment, insurance and similar purposes
  • Disclosing records for financial and administrative purposes
  • Disclosing information about serious communicable diseases
  • Reporting gunshot and knife wounds
  • Disclosing information for education, training and for learning from adverse
  • Incidents and near misses
  • Responding to criticism in the press 

Welsh versions

A Welsh version of this page is available. The draft guidance and consultation questions are also available in Welsh.

What happens next?

We’ll analyse the responses to the consultation and consider any changes to the guidance in light of these comments.

The final versions of the guidance will be published in 2016.

Contact us

Please call the Standards and Ethics Team on 020 7189 5404 or email us at if you need any further information about this consultation.