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Access to Information

The Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOI) and Environmental Information Regulations 2004 (EIR) give individuals the right to access information held by the Mid Cheshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. 

The Information Commissioner, who is responsible for monitoring and enforcing compliance with information rights legislation, has drawn up what is called a Model Publication Scheme for all public sector organisations which we have adopted.

 

Publication Scheme

Publication Scheme is divided into 7 classes of information. Information falling in each of these classes is published on our website and can be accessed via the navigation pane on the left side of this webpage or by clicking one of the links below:

 

As an open and transparent organisation we are committed to routinely publishing as much information as possible; however, we are not required to make information routinely available when:

  • The information is not held,

  • The information is exempt from disclosure under legislation
    (i.e. Freedom of Information Act 2000, or the Environmental Information Regulations 2004),

  • The Trust cannot easily access the information.

 

Please note: During the transition to our new website some links and content within our publication scheme may not work. We apologise for any inconvenience and are endeavouring to ensure that all information is updated as soon as possible.

 

Making a Request for Information

Please ensure that before you make a request you check that the information you require isn’t already available via this website or that a previous request has not asked for the same information (please see our Disclosure Log) as information accessible by other means is generally exempt.

The majority of requests for information made over the past two years are published within the below categories: 

 

Please be aware that any requests submitted to the Trust may be made available on the website as part of our disclosure log; please be assured that all personal information about the applicant will be removed prior to publication. The Trust will make available the majority of its responses to requests via the disclosure log on a monthly basis. Subject to the volume of request received by the Trust, responses will be available on our website for approximately 2 years.

Please note: During the transition to our new website past requests will be uploaded in batches over the next few weeks. We apologise for any inconvenience and are endeavouring to ensure that all information is updated as soon as possible.

 

Information not available on the Publication Scheme

If you would like information which is not on our website or otherwise available through our Publication Scheme you can request information, and where appropriate the Trust will treat your request it in accordance with the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 or the Environmental Information Regulations 2004.

Environmental Information Regulations 2004

Individuals may request information under the Environmental Information Regulations 2004. On occasion, information requested under the Freedom of Information Act may fall under the remit of the Regulations. If the Trust identifies that this is the case we will contact the requestor as soon as possible to advice them of the fact, and will handle the request under the appropriate access regime.

Timescales for Requests

The Trust aims to acknowledge requests within 5 working days of receipt. Under the Freedom of Information Act the Trust is obliged to respond fully within 20 working days of receipt. If a request falls within the Environmental Information Regulations the Trust is required to respond within 20 working days except in limited circumstances. If the Trust is not able to respond to any requests within 20 working days applicants will be contacted as soon as possible.

 

Charges

The purpose of this scheme is to make the maximum amount of information readily available at minimum inconvenience and cost to the public. Material which is published in our Publication Scheme is provided free of charge. Under the Freedom of Information Act there are no charges for requests that involve less than 18 hours of staff time; which equates to a cost of £450. Any requests that may be in excess of this appropriate limit may be subject to a charge at the discretion of the Trust, we will inform you of any such charges prior to responding to your request. This will give you the option to confirm your request, to amend it to reduce the charge involved or to cancel it if you do not want to pay any charges. Postage and printing charges may apply, but the Trust will inform you of these charges in advance. The Environmental Information Regulations permit the use of some charges, however, except in limited circumstances the Trust does not charge for these requests.

 

Exemptions and Exceptions

If we are unable to supply the information you request we will fully explain the reasons why. 

 

Appeals

Should you be unhappy with the way in which your request has been dealt with, or any other aspect of the way the Trust is responding to requests for information, please contact us at foi@mcht.nhs.uk.

If you are not satisfied with this response you receive, you have the right to appeal. In the first instance, please contact the Trust’s Governance Manager who will initiate an internal review:

Governance Manager
Integrated Governance Department
Mid Cheshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
Leighton Hospital
Crewe
Cheshire
CW1 4QJ

Tel: 01270273350
Email:
foi@mcht.nhs.uk

The Trust will then review its decision and respond to your appeal, as soon as possible, but within 20 working days.   

If, following the review, you are still not satisfied with the way we have handled your request, or if you are unhappy with our response, then under Section 50 of the Act, you are entitled to appeal to the Information Commissioner (ICO): -  

Information Commissioner’s Office,
Wycliffe House,
Water Lane,
Wilmslow,
Cheshire
SK9 5AF
ICO Website:
http://www.ico.gov.uk (link opens in new window) 

 

Re-use of Trust Information

Mid Cheshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust’s website is subject to Copyright. The supply and provision of information under relevant access legislation such as the Freedom of Information Act does not give an automatic right to re-use it. Unless written permission is granted any re-use of Trust information may constitute a breach of our copyright. 

The Re-Use of Public Sector Information Regulations (PSI) provide a framework for public sector organisations to licence the re-use of their information, however the Trust is not obliged under the regulations to do so. Nothing in the regulations affects the rights of access under other legislation, such as Freedom of Information Act or Environmental Information Regulations.
 

 

Further Details

For further information please see our policy for dealing with requests for information:

 

Alternative Formats

If you require any of the information contained within this scheme in an alternative format, i.e. Braille, audio, large print or a different language then please contact:

Patient Experience Team
Leighton Hospital
Crewe
Cheshire
CW1 4QJ

Tel: 01270 273014