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Educational Development

Information Handling in Practice


Information Handling in Practice is a new intermediate e-learning module to support administrators, clinicians, managers and other health and social care staff who work with personal and sensitive data. The short module, which should take approximately one hour to complete, presents a series of brief scenarios (based on realistic situations) where confidentiality and data protection is compromised. The scenarios illustrate the main principles of the Data Protection Act 1998 and highlight the responsibilities of organisations and individuals in taking care of information. The module also highlights some of the consequences of getting it wrong! Information Handling in Practice is accompanied by a foundation module, Safe Information Handling, for staff with less in-depth learning needs.

Registration and Access

This course is provided to health and social care organisations through learnPro and other learning management systems.  Further information about registration and access can be found at our learnPro information page.

Target Audience

Training on data protection and confidentiality is mandatory for all NHSScotland staff.  Information Handling in Practice and its companion module, Safe Information Handling provide mandatory training options for health and social care staff and employers seeking training solutions in this area.  Safe Information Handling is a foundation module addressing the minimum learning needs for all NHSScotland staff.  Information Handling in Practice meets the intermediate learning needs of those with more complex responsibilities and greater autonomy in this area of professional practice.  Both of the Information Governance modules are based on the NHSS Information Governance Competency Framework which sets out the skills and competences required by staff.  It should be noted that individual staff members may need to demonstrate competence at different levels, depending on their specific role.

Learning Outcomes

On completion of the course the learner should be able to:

  • Demonstrate awareness of professional, ethical, legal and policy requirements for confidentiality.
  • Understand key points on how to store and secure personal data
  • Demonstrate awareness of the need to inform data subjects (patients, staff members etc) about how their information will be used.
  • Know how to obtain personal information fairly by consent, demonstrating awareness of different types of consent and the conditions that apply
  • Know how to record consent in line with legal, professional and ethical requirements
  • Demonstrate awareness of need to maintain accuracy of records
  • Be aware of need to correct inaccuracies and report them whenever they occur
  • Know the Data Protect Act and Caldicott principles in relation to relevance, quantity and quality of information

Staff will be aware of valid sources of advice and guidance on the safe handling of information.

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