On confidentiality and information sharing
Sharing information about individuals between public authorities is often essential if we need to keep people safe, or ensure they get the best services. The Surrey Multi-Agency Information Sharing Protocol (MAISP) is the over-arching protocol in a two-tier framework for information sharing in Surrey.
The MAISP is an agreed set of principles about sharing personal or confidential information. It enables each organisation signed up to the protocol to understand the circumstances in which it should share information and what its responsibilities are.
The second tiers are context specific information sharing protocols like this Early Years Providers Partnership Policy on Confidentiality and Information Sharing. They identify the operational data requirements to be shared for specific and lawful purposes, essentially the who/ why/ where/ when/ what questions of sharing personal information. These requirements are linked to the Department for Education (DfE) guidance on information sharing, go to www.education.gov.uk for copies.
This policy uses the following definitions:
- provider - an organisation or individual registered with Ofsted or exempt from registration under the Childcare Act 2006, that delivers childcare or early education
- service user - a child who goes to a provider (as defined above).
The Early Years Providers Partnership Policy on Confidentiality and Information Sharing
This policy is a joint partnership policy on information sharing, between Surrey County Council and provider staff. The aim is to improve the delivery of care given to service users by appropriately sharing their personal information in a way that meets confidentiality requirements. Examples of personal information include, their full legal name, date of birth, name of parents, home address, home telephone number, emergency contact number, information about child's attendance, attainment, any difficulties and the solutions tried, family circumstances. Additional information could include other professionals involved with the family. The Surrey MAISP User Group, Children's Services and the Corporate Information Governance Team were consulted on this policy.
- outlines the principles of confidentiality
- establishes a partnership code of conduct for handling confidential information as referred to in the Surrey MAISP
- applies to all information on service users managed in work undertaken by employees of the parties who have signed up to this policy.
You should read this policy along with the Tier 1 Surrey Multi-Agency Information Sharing Protocol (MAISP). You can find this at www.surreycc.gov.uk
Provider's senior managers must review the documents every year. Surrey County Council will provide you with a new contract to sign annually through the Free Early Education Portal and suggest this is an ideal time for the review.
Providers that sign up to this context-specific information sharing protocol automatically become signatories of the Surrey MAISP, the over-arching protocol and are bound by its principles.