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Services (Medical Records)

Volume 124: debated on Friday 11 December 1987

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To ask the Secretary of State for Defence in what circumstances an individual service man or woman's legal representatives are entitled to see an individual service man or woman's medical records.

For reasons of medical confidentiality the practice is only to release medical documents on a doctor-to-doctor basis. However, when a legal representative, acting with his or her client's consent, establishes a clear legal need to see that client's medical documents, for example in connection with litigation, consideration would be given to disclosing the documents to that representative's medical adviser.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what are the circumstances in which civilian doctors are allowed to inspect an individual Army service man or woman's medical records held by the Army.

A service man or woman's service medical documents will normally be made available to a civilian doctor only for the purposes of treatment and with the written authority of the individual concerned.