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The Commission for Health Improvement (Functions) (Wales) Regulations 2000

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Restrictions on disclosure of information to the Commission

19.—(1) The Commission or a person authorised under regulation 16(1) shall not inspect or take copies of documents under regulation 16(5) to the extent that—

(a)those documents consist of confidential information(1) which relates to and identifies a living individual, unless one or more of the conditions specified in paragraph (3) applies; or

(b)the inspection or copying of those documents involves the disclosure of information if that disclosure is prohibited by or under any enactment, unless paragraph (4) applies.

(2) A person shall not be required to produce documents or information under regulation 17(1) or give an explanation under regulation 17(2) to the extent that the production of those documents or that information or the giving of that explanation discloses information—

(a)which is confidential and which relates to and identifies a living individual, unless one or more of the conditions specified in paragraph (3) applies; or

(b)the disclosure of which is prohibited by or under any enactment, unless paragraph (4) applies.

(3) The conditions referred to in paragraphs (1)(a) and (2)(a) are—

(a)the information is disclosed in a form in which the identity of the individual cannot be ascertained;

(b)the individual consents to the information being disclosed;

(c)the individual cannot be traced despite the taking of all reasonable steps;

(d)in a case where the Commission is exercising its functions under section 20(1)(c) of the Act

(i)it is not practicable to disclose the information in a form in which the identity of the individual cannot be ascertained;

(ii)the Commission considers that there is a serious risk to the health or safety of patients arising out of the matters which are the subject of the investigation; and

(iii)having regard to that risk and the urgency of the exercise of those functions, the Commission considers that the information should be disclosed without the consent of the individual.

(4) This paragraph applies where—

(a)the prohibition on the disclosure of information operates by reason of the fact that the information is capable of identifying an individual; and

(b)the information in question is in a form in which the identity of the individual cannot be ascertained.

(5) In a case where the disclosure of information is prohibited by—

(a)paragraph (1); or

(b)paragraph (2) and the prohibition operates by reason of the fact that the information is capable of identifying an individual,

the Commission or a person authorised by the Commission under regulation 16(1) may require the person holding the information to put the information in a form in which the identity of the individual concerned cannot be identified, in order that the information may be disclosed.

(1)

See section 23(6) of the 1999 Act for the definition of “confidential information”.

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