Blood Result Payments

Went to pick up blood test forms at GP's today. They were not ready even though they had been requested on Monday. One of the Secretaries (not main one, who's lovely) thought I wanted results and told me that these now had to be paid for - £5 to £15 for a set of results. Was used to paying £1 per sheet and there are normally 3 sheets, but this seems excessive! Has anyone else been told this and is it legal for surgeries to charge this amount? Janet.

23 Replies

  • They are entitled to cover costs ie paper, printer ink only. Commercial print shops charge 20p per A4 sheet, why should surgeries charge more? It is not supposed to be a revenue stream.

    My practice manager tried to charge me £10 for a set of results. I refused to pay and requested an appt to view my records on line in the practice foc.

    On another occasion I asked the receptionist to read them to me with lab ref ranges while I made notes. She printed them off saying it wasn't a good use of her time vs the cost of a few sheets of paper.

  • Exactly Clutter. How much more money do they think they can get out of us. Janet.

  • The way round this problem of having to pay for results is to ask for access to VIEW your records so you can take notes in your own time. And that has to be free by law, if the records have been updated in the previous 40 days.

  • When I've asked to view the screen it has been very grudgingly half-turned to me and I can't write them down quickly enough before the GP is going on to other things. Janet.

  • You make an appointment with the practice manager or receptionist to access a monitor and view your records in your own time.

  • Can't see this going down very well at our surgery. As I have to take note of my son's results too, it seems as though I am always at surgery lately and usually begging for results. Janet.

  • Janet, It doesn't matter whether they like it or not, it is your right under the DPA to access your medical records. If they want to overcharge for printouts you ask for foc access to view your records. If that's a problem they can print off the records foc or for a few pence per sheet.

    Otherwise they're saying you pay to have your results. Does this mean that cash strapped patients are not entitled to the results of their tests?

  • Hi

    I just picked up my results I asked for a print out for my own records ,the receptionist printed them out straight away,no cost.


  • How can there be such a discrepancy between surgeries? Janet.

  • My surgery charges £2 per results. I have asked if they charge this to everyone as I am currently not working and they say they do so I had to pay to get latest bloods.

    Then I had to persuade them not to charge me agsin as the lab didn't do all of the tests first time around and I had to go back and give more blood and get further results - didn't see why I should pay twice when it was the lab's mistake !

  • I really think they are trying to push us down the private route. Janet.

  • I think it is more likely that being properly informed of results means that patients are likely to be worried by results flagged low, high, abnormal or outside of range and to challenge the doctor's assertion that results are fine.

  • You are probably right Clutter, they certainly don't like being challenged and of course our results are always fine, aren't they! Janet.

  • There does seem to be an attitude of not being keen for patients to have the information. Maybe that is aimed at getting people into the private route I don't know. I thought all nhs surgeries would have the same policies yes. I guess they can charge what they like then ? £15 is ridiculous - I hope you didn't have to pay that much ?

  • Did not have to pay as secretary got the wrong end of the stick and I had not even got the blood forms , so no results yet. Hope to pick up forms on Monday. Janet.

  • That's good news Janet :)

    I must admit I don't pay for mine and they are always willing to print them off for me in reception. Some docs I think do have an issue with this -Knowledge is power -and I think sometimes you know more then they so they feel intimidated. Always wise to get the results.

    I was once told that i had f'failed' the diabetes test by a GP -when I got print out of the results -i was well within range -i checked with Diabetics Uk and they told me I was fine......clearly he had totally mis-informed me and if i hadn't checked would have worried. Moral of the story? ALWAYS double check everything you are told by a to be safe then sorry!

  • Hi Wavylines, always better safe than sorry these days with GPs, so we always need to check results, especially with knowledgeable folk on this site. Janet.

  • Supposedly, by about this time next year (2015), this discussion will have become irrelevant for most of us:

    NHS England told Pulse that from next year the GMS contract will be changed so that GP practices will be obliged to ‘offer and promote patient online access to their own medical records’ held by the practice by April 2015.

    As always, lots of fluffy statements and uncertainty, and test results might not initially be available, but ...


  • We can always but hope Rod. Did ask a short while ago at surgery about results going on line, and was told a definite no because of security of data - what a joke! Thanks for link, I will be sure to keep a copy handy to show Practice Manager. Janet.

  • According to the National Archive:


    Will there be a financial charge for access to health records?


    Under the Data Protection Act 1998 (Fees and Miscellaneous Provisions) Regulations 2001 the maximum fee that can be charged for providing copies of health records is £10 for computer records and £50 for copies of manual records or a mixture of manual and computer records. Charges are for copying and posting the records only and should not result in a profit for the record holder. Some types of records, such as x-rays, may be expensive to copy.


    So if any is charged more than £10, it is clearly in over the limit, provided the records are computerised.


  • Although I already knew about charges under the DPA 1998, I just meant for results of blood tests after they had got back to surgery. These have only been £1 per sheet currently and only usually about 3 sheets max. so to quote about £5 to £15 was abit steep, I felt. Thanks again Rod. Janet.

  • I wholeheartedly agree.

    As someone said earlier, this should reflect the actual costs and not be regarded as a revenue stream. I can understand why people wouldn't complain (lots of reasons), but that deserves a complaint to the Information Commissioner's Office.

    In my book, somewhere around 20p per sheet would be reasonable.


  • Blood forms will evidently now be ready for Tuesday 18 March - I will collect Wednesday am, so will be interesting to see how much I am charged, as I will ask for a printout of results. I will bear in mind what you say about Information Commissioner's Office. Thank you Rod for your ever-welcome information. Janet.

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