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Freedom of Information (FOI) requests

Before sending us a new request, please check our disclosure log in case we have answered it for someone else first. This list may also help you identify who holds the information you are looking for. 

What is the Freedom of Information Act?

The FOI Act 2000 gives a general right of access to all types of recorded information held by public bodies, of which NHS Kernow is one. Full rights of access where granted in January 2005 but you may also request information held on record before the Act itself was passed. Some exemptions do apply which mean you may not be able to access all information.

The intention of the Freedom of Information Act is to encourage a spirit of openness and transparency.

The Act does not give people access to their own personal data (information about themselves) such as their health records or credit reference file. If a member of the public wants to see information that a public authority holds about them, they should make a subject access request under the Data Protection Act 1998.

Who can use the Act to request information?

Any person has the right to make a request for information held by a public authority. You do not have to say why you want the information and you are free to use it for your own purposes, including any non-commercial research you are doing and for the purposes of news reporting.

Any other re-use, for example commercial publication, would require the permission of the copyright holder.

Most documents supplied by NHS Kernow will have been produced by us and will be our copyright. Information you receive which is not subject to our copyright continues to be protected by the copyright of the person, or organisation, from which the information originated. You must ensure that you gain permission before reproducing any third party information.

Will I have to pay for the information?

Where information is available via our disclosure logpublication scheme or website, it will generally be provided free of charge. If you are accessing documents via our website, the only charges that apply will be those levied by your internet service provider. We will not usually make a charge for providing hard copies of information, but may make a charge for copying onto other media.

Where information is provided under general rights of access, in some circumstances a fee may be payable. If this is the case, the fee will be calculated in accordance with the Freedom of Information Act.

If a fee is payable, a fees notice will be issued to you and you will be required to pay the fee before we can deal with your request.

We are not obliged to comply with vexatious, repeated or substantially similar requests from the same person, other than at reasonable intervals.

Can my request be declined?

We will provide you with the information requested unless there is a good reason for not doing so. If this is the case, we will tell you the reason for declining your request. If you do not agree with our decision, you can ask us to reconsider, and if the request is still declined, you can ask the Information Commission's officer to review that decision.

How to make an FOI request

Requests made under the Freedom of Information Act must be made in writing (or via email) other than in very exceptional circumstances. Requests must include the full name and address for correspondence and a description of the information requested. You can say what format you prefer to receive the information in (for example on paper or electronically).

Before submitting a Freedom of Information (FOI) request, why not check our disclosure log, which has responses to all of our previous requests and you may be able to find what you are looking for. We also have a publication scheme that may assist with your query, which is available hereThis list may also help you identify who holds the information you are looking for. 

If not, you can email or write to us: Freedom of Information Officer, NHS Kernow, Sedgemoor Centre, St Austell PL25 5AS. 

We will normally acknowledge the request within three working days and usually respond within twenty working days (subject to conditions and exemptions).

Information about Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Primary Care Trust and other providers

If you are looking for information from Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Primary Care Trust, including the disclosure log, please go to the archived website here

If you need to contact someone about this information, or can't find what you're looking for, please contact the Department of Health’s legacy team, which is responsible for handling all enquiries relating to the former primary care trust. They can be contacted by emailing reviews&

NHS Kernow is not responsible for handling Freedom of Information requests about GPs, dentists or opticians. If you wish to make a Freedom of Information request about these services please contact NHS England at You can also contact NHS England on 0300 311 22 33. This list may also help you identify who holds the information you are looking for. 

Further information

If you are unhappy with a refusal to disclose information you should firstly complain to NHS Kernow. If you continue to be dissatisfied with the response you can then appeal to the Information Commissioner who will investigate the case and either agree with NHS Kernow's decision or decide that the information must be disclosed.

The address for the Information Commissioner is:
Wycliffe House
Water Lane

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