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The decision as to whether to allow images, an examination or treatment to be recorded should be made by the individual departments concerned taking into account local and national guidelines.Departments should have a clear policy on this issue following a risk assessment that takes account of the following:

i)  The views of members of the professional workforce both as a group and individually should clearly be taken into account. Many do not want to be filmed or recorded and their wishes should be respected.

ii) It can be a great distraction and can increase stress levels for the healthcare professional at a time when they require very high levels of concentration.

iii) It has the potential to extend the time of the examination or treatment which may be contrary to  published safety guidelines and advice.  

iv) Departments should take into consideration the possible existence of local policies allowing, for example, the recording of a birth.  Many employing authorities do try to facilitate this type of request within the Directorates that have responsibility for maternity services.

v) Departments should consider consulting with any relevant patient liaison groups that the employing authority may have and ensure the final agreed policy is publicly available. Removal of material from social media that has included the healthcare professional without their consent may be difficult, particularly so if no prior notice of policy has been made available.

vi) Departments might also wish to consider how staff should respond to situations where filming and/or recording  begins or continues without permission and contrary to the agreed policy.

This advice does not refer to the taking of images by sonographers during obstetric examinations and that is agreed procedure between the ultrasound department and the employing authority. This is often for a previously advertised fee.

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