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A good practice guide to The Freedom of Information Act 2000

Patient information A-Z

The Freedom of Information Act 2000

The Freedom of Information Act was passed on 30 November 2000. It gives a general right of access to all types of recorded information held by the Trust. The intention of the Act is to encourage a spirit of openness and transparency in the NHS.

The Act gives the right to be told if the information exists and to receive the information, subject to certain exemptions. Everyone has full access rights from 1 January 2005.

Trusts are required as part of the Act to publish a publication scheme.

Publication scheme

The publication scheme is a guide to the information the Trust routinely publishes. It also describes how the information will be published and whether a fee will be charged for that information.

The publication scheme is split into different classes of information such as who we are, what we spend and how we make decisions. You can access a copy of our publication scheme on our Freedom of Information page.

Information made available under our publication scheme can be accessed from the relevant pages on the Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (CUH) website. If you have any problems locating any information please contact the Freedom of Information Officer (contact details below).

Responding to requests

All requests for information must be responded to within 20 working days. A fee may be charged for dealing with a request. This will be calculated in accordance with the Act.

If the cost of complying with the request exceeds the limit set by the Secretary of State, CUH does not have to action the request. The applicant would be informed of this decision in writing.

CUH is not obliged to comply with repeated or substantially similar requests from the same person other than at reasonable intervals.

If the Trust is unable to deal with the request within 20 working days, the applicant would be informed of this with an estimated time for responding to the request.

If a request for information is received and we establish that all or part of the information is held by a third party we will inform the applicant of this.

Providing advice and assistance

We have a duty to provide advice and assistance to applicants who want to make a request for information and need help in doing so.

Advice and assistance is available from the Freedom of Information Officer (see the request for information section in this leaflet) or contact the Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) on 01223 216756.


We will try to comply with all requests for information. However, in some cases data cannot be supplied in full or part if one of the exemptions outlined in the Act has to be applied. These range from personal data, security and commercial interest to information being accessible by other means.

If an exemption was applied to a request for information, the applicant would be fully informed of this decision in writing.

Requests for information

Requests for information have to be made in writing (email is acceptable) and must include the name and address for correspondence and details of the information requested. Requests for information should be posted to:

Freedom of Information Officer, Information Governance, Box 153, Addenbrooke’s Hospital, Cambridge Biomedical Campus, Hills Road, Cambridge, CB2 0QQ

or you can email our Freedom of Information Officer.

We are smoke-free

Smoking is not allowed anywhere on the hospital campus. For advice and support in quitting, contact your GP or the free NHS stop smoking helpline on 0800 169 0 169.

Other formats

Help accessing this information in other formats is available. To find out more about the services we provide, please visit our patient information help page (see link below) or telephone 01223 256998.

Contact us

Cambridge University Hospitals
NHS Foundation Trust
Hills Road, Cambridge

Telephone +44 (0)1223 245151