The College of Optometrists

Disclosing information about children or young people without their consent

You can share confidential information about a child or young person without their consent if you consider that the benefits to the child or young person that will arise from sharing will outweigh the public and patient’s interest in keeping the information confidential. If a child or young person refuses to consent to you sharing the information, you should consider their reasons for refusing, and weigh the possible consequences of not sharing the information against the harm that sharing may cause.260 You should only disclose information about a child or young person to an appropriate body without their, or their parents’, consent if:
  1. it is in their best interests
  2. failure to do so might place them at risk of serious harm
  3. the information would help prevent, detect or prosecute a serious crime.
You should record your reasons for doing this in the patient notes.

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