Pre-hospital / Emergency / Critical Care experience of Medical Director

Waiting for an internal review by Scottish Ambulance Service of their handling of this request.

Dr Robert S. Coull

Dear Scottish Ambulance Service,

1. Please provide details of the level training and experience of your Medical Director in the follwing specialities:

- pre-hopital immediate care
- emergency hospital medicine
- critical care medicine
- air ambulance medicine

Information should include:
- qualifications held in those specialties
- time spent in post in those specialties
- the highest grade worked at in each speciality
- the date of last working in that speciality.

In addtition please provide the following information:

2. Is your Medical Director an active pre-hospital doctor?

3. How many 999 calls does your Medical Director attend on average per year as a pre-hospital doctor?

Yours faithfully,

Dr Robert S. Coull

FOI (SCOTTISH AMBULANCE SERVICE), Scottish Ambulance Service

Dear Dr Coull,

 

Scottish Ambulance Service – Freedom of Information Request – FOI/1163/18

 

Thank you for your email of 22 January 2018. Your request has now been
logged and we aim to respond within 20 working days.

 

Kind Regards,

Lora

 

Lora Vernon, Corporate Affairs and Engagement Department, Scottish
Ambulance Service National Headquarters, Gyle Square, 1 South Gyle
Crescent, Edinburgh, EH12 9EB | [1]www.scottishambulance.com

 

 

 

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FOI (SCOTTISH AMBULANCE SERVICE), Scottish Ambulance Service

1 Attachment

Dear Dr Coull,  

 

Scottish Ambulance Service - Freedom of Information Request - FOI/1163/18

Please find attached the final response to your Freedom of Information
request.

Kind Regards,

Lora Vernon

 

Lora Vernon, Corporate Affairs and Engagement Department, Scottish
Ambulance Service National Headquarters, Gyle Square, 1 South Gyle
Crescent, Edinburgh, EH12 9EB│ [1]www.scottishambulance.com

 

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Dr Robert S. Coull

Dear Scottish Ambulance Service,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of Scottish Ambulance Service's handling of my FOI request 'Pre-hospital / Emergency / Critical Care experience of Medical Director'.

You have stated that you hold the information that I requested, but that the information is exempt from disclosure as it is “personal information”. I take this to mean that you are claiming an absolute exemption under Section 38(1)(b) of the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 and that you have deemed that no public interest test is necessary for this exemption to be claimed.

There are three situations under which a Section 38(1)(b) exemption can be claimed.
1. Where disclosure would breach one of the eight data protection principals. There is no suggestion that this is the case here.
2. Where disclosure would breach Section 10 of the Data Protection Act 1988. This requires a public interest test, which you have not applied and I therefore assume this is not the basis for your claim that the information is exempt.
3. Where the data held is “sensitive personal information”.

What is and is not sensitive personal information is defined by the Data Protection Act 1988:
“Section 2 Sensitive personal data.
In this Act “sensitive personal data” means personal data consisting of information as to—
(a)the racial or ethnic origin of the data subject,
(b)his political opinions,
(c)his religious beliefs or other beliefs of a similar nature,
(d)whether he is a member of a trade union (within the meaning of the M1Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992),
(e)his physical or mental health or condition,
(f)his sexual life,
(g)the commission or alleged commission by him of any offence, or
(h)any proceedings for any offence committed or alleged to have been committed by him, the disposal of such proceedings or the sentence of any court in such proceedings.”

The information requested relates to the professional medical qualifications and training of the most senior licensed medical practitioner in your organisation charged with making vital management decisions which affect patients lives. That information does not meet the above definition of ‘sensitive personal information’.

The Scottish Information Commissioner has produced a flowchart to aid us in deciding what information to exempt in these cases.
http://www.itspublicknowledge.info/nmsru...

Following that flowchart we obtain the following answers:
-> does the information meet the definition of ‘sensitive personal information’ -> no
-> would the subject have the right to access the information? -> yes
-> does the requester have a legitimate interest (in this case the information has been asked of all the ambulance services in the UK and relates to the quality of medical direction for patient services provided by UK ambulance services) -> yes
-> is disclosure necessary for the legitimate interest? -> yes
-> would disclosure cause unwarranted prejudice to the subject? -> no
-> is processing otherwise lawful? -> yes
-> exemption 38(1)(b) does not apply

It should be noted that other UK ambulance services have provided identical requested information regarding their MDs and none to date have claimed an exemption.

I therefore believe the information is not exempt, should be disclosed, and request an internal review.

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address: https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/p...

Yours faithfully,

Dr Robert S. Coull

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