Coronavirus COVID-19 and freedom of information requests
Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals NHS Trust is committed to complying with ‘Rights of access’ requests made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000.
However, the care of our patients and the safety of our staff take precedence, and our resources are currently prioritised in clinical areas as NHS colleagues continue to deal with the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. We have prioritised all activity in supporting front-line colleagues.
FOI requests: statutory timescales
With this added pressure on the NHS, we are unlikely at this present time to meet statutory timescales when dealing with new requests for information, and there will delays in obtaining updates on existing FOI requests. Can we therefore ask you to consider if your request can be postponed until after this pandemic is over or to bear with us during this unprecedented time.
We will continue to work as best we can and continue to process requests for information, but we will be wholly dependent on availability of staff to provide these details during this challenging time.
The Information Commissioner’s Office recognises the pressures currently faced by the NHS.
FOI postal requests
Please also note, we will not be handling or processing any postal requests at this current time. Please send all requests to our email address BHRUT.FreedomOfInformation@nhs.net
Thank you for your patience and understanding.
1 April 2020
The Freedom of Information (FOI) Act 2000 allows anyone to ask for and request access to all types of recorded information held by public authorities. We manage FOI requests in line with guidance from the Information Commissioner's Office.
Please note: access to health records does not fall under the Freedom of Information Act. Please visit your patient record for more information.
Freedom of Information requests
Requests or queries relating to health records are not processed under Freedom of Information. Please read the 'Subject Access Request' section above.
or write to:
Freedom of Information
Communications and Engagement
1st Floor Neutral Zone, Queen’s Hospital
Rom Valley Way
Request response times
We aim to respond to your request within 20 working days. If we are unable to provide the information within that time, we will contact you and give you an estimate of how much longer the request will take.
Exemptions to the Act
There are some exemptions to the Act, for example, if the request relates to personal information or information intended for future publication.
When an exemption is considered appropriate, we will explain to you why this decision has been taken, and any further steps you can take. Further information about exemptions can be found on the Information Commissioner's Office.
Requests can also be refused if the time taken to investigate whether we hold the information exceeds a cost of £450. In this case, we will contact you to establish whether you wish to:
- pay the cost
- amend the request so that it costs less than £450
- no longer proceed with the request.
We are entitled to charge for the copying and postage of material, but we will usually absorb these costs. If we do consider charging you, we will let you know first.