Freedom of Information Act requests

Responding to Freedom of Information (FOI) Act requests during the current CORVID-19/Coronavirus situation                   

Before submitting a request for information, please bear in mind that many of our operational and clinical teams are now engaged in  dealing with the current situation which as you will appreciate is rapidly changing requiring us to quickly act on national guidance and to treat patients.

Please consider deferring making a request until a future date.

If you do make a request, whilst we will do everything we can to respond to you within 20 working days of receiving your request, we hope you will appreciate that there may be a delay due to the current Coronavirus/COVID-19 situation.  We will keep you informed of any delay in dealing with your request.

Should our response to your request breach the statutory time frame and you remain unhappy with our response you have the right to complain to the Information Commissioners Office and you can contact them at www.ico.org.uk or call 0303 123 1113.

You may find the Information Commissoner’s Office (ICO) statement on this topic of interest, click here.

 

The Freedom of Information (FOI) Act was passed by Parliament on 30 November 2000. It gives a general right of access to all non-personal types of recorded information held by public authorities, including to members of the public and hospital patients. The FOI Act applies to all public bodies, including the NHS.

Information we are required to publish under the FOI Act

Under the FOI Act, we have a duty to specify:

  • what information we publish
  • how the information is made available
  • whether it is available free if there is a charge.

The Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust publication scheme explains what information the trust makes available to the public. 

Wherever possible, we make information easy for you to access.

If you are unable to find the information you require in the publication scheme, please email your request to rf.foi@nhs.net

We will aim to respond to your request for information within 20 working days.

Freedom of information Act (FOIA) Compliance Statistics

In 2018 the Cabinet Office published a revised Freedom of Information Act Code of Practice. One of the new requirements was for public authorities to publish more information about their performance in handling FOIA requests.

The Royal Free London will be publishing these compliance statistics quarterly. 

The RFL’s FOI compliance statistics report will provide you with details of our performance regarding handling requests for information under the FOIA and contains the following information (from January 2020):

The total number of requests received during the period
The number of the requests that had not been completed at the end of the quarter
The number of requests that were met within the statutory deadline (20 working days)
The number of requests where the deadline for information was extended
The number of requests where the information was not provided within the statutory deadline
The number of requests where the information was granted in full
The number of the received requests where the information was refused in full
Percentage responded to within 20 working days
The number of the received requests where the information was partially granted and partly refused
The number of requests for internal review
The number of complaints to the Information Commissioner

We have provided information back to April 2015 (2015/16) but we did not report on all the information above for this period.

Click to view the FOI compliance report

Accessing your health records

Access to health records is governed by the Data Protection Act, not the Freedom of Information Act. Find out about accessing a copy of your health records.