Are Attorneys Entitled to See Medical Records?

Are Attorneys Entitled to See Medical Records?

Lasting Power of Attorney

A Lasting Power of Attorney is a legal document where an individual gives another person or persons (the Attorney(s)) power to make certain decisions and to deal with legal formalities and documents at their direction or on their behalf. There are two types of Lasting Power of Attorney, one for Property and Financial Affairs and one for Health and Welfare.

The Office of the Public Guardian (OPG) has recently issued guidance to NHS staff that an Attorney under either type of LPA is entitled to have access to the donor’s medical records – the same applies for a Court appointed Deputy. The disclosure of a person’s medical records will allow Attorneys and Deputies to make best interest decisions on behalf of the donor.

The guidance confirms that NHS staff should provide the information in a timely manner but they must ensure the third party making the request is entitled to act on behalf of the patient. A request to search the OPG’s registers can be made by NHS staff and local authorities. In urgent cases, such as decisions about life-sustaining treatment, a rapid search can be performed to obtain additional information as soon as possible.

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If you wish to speak to a member of our Private Client team about setting up a Lasting Power of Attorney, then please get in touch. You can call us on 01323 727321 to arrange an appointment or please fill in the form below and someone will get in touch.

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Please note the above is for information purposes only and is intended to be a short summary.  It should not be treated as a comprehensive guide and should not be acted on without qualified legal advice.