The complainant requested a list of the delegates who had attended an event organised by the Eastern Cheshire NHS Primary Care Trust (the ‘PCT’) as part of a programme of public consultation called the Future Health Care Project, together with their contact details and their ‘status information’. The PCT provided a list of the job titles of the delegates and the organisations that they represented. However, it refused to provide the names and contact details of the delegates, and cited the exemption at section 40 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the ‘FOIA’), stating it believed that the disclosure would be a breach of the Data Protection Act 1998 (the ‘DPA’). During the course of the Commissioner’s investigation the PCT informed him that it no longer sought to rely on an exemption to withhold the majority of the information – it now sought only to withhold the contact details, where the delegates had provided personal contact details, i.e. residential addresses, personal email accounts. After investigating the matter the Commissioner decided that the PCT had breached the requirements of section 1, in so far as it had cited an exemption which it had subsequently partially withdrawn. The Commissioner also concluded that the public authority had breached the requirements of section 17 of the FOIA by failing to issue an adequate refusal notice. He did, however, uphold the PCT’s decision to withhold the personal contact details under section 40 of the FOIA. Central and Eastern Cheshire NHS Primary Care Trust has now taken over the Eastern Cheshire NHS Primary Care Trust’s responsibilities, and therefore this Notice is addressed to it.
FOI 17: Upheld
 UKICO FS50101815
England and Wales
Updated: 07 February 2022; Ref: scu.532946