Informaticopia

Friday, January 23, 2009

Privacy and confidentiality of patient information

I was interested to note that The NHS Constitution for England which was published this week gives several pledges to patients including:

You have the right to privacy and confidentiality and to expect the NHS to keep your confidential information safe and secure.

This is a vital issue where, I feel, we need still to get clarity about how this will be achieved - particularly in the light of Tony Collins Blog post this week Post-it notes for passwords - an NHS option? about the culture of shared passwords in the NHS.

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Friday, March 16, 2007

1st uploads from GP to national spine

The first upload of GP patients records to the NPfIT national spine are about to start.

Bolton has been selected as the pilot site and two GPs practices in the town will begin uploading GP records as part of the "summary care record" which will contain containing details of name, address, medication history, serious illnesses and allergies. These will then be accessible to the out-of-hours provider and A+E department.

Letters and leaflets explaining the programme will go out in the next few weeks, and local residents will have the option to "opt out". This long fought for opt out will have three possible options. The first is a total refusal for their records to be uploaded. The second option is to limit the people who are able to access it and the final options is that particular details - such as an abortion or being on HIV medication - must not be uploaded (the so called and long awaited sealed envelope). However, very few details of how this will be achieved have yet been made available.

It will be very interesting to see how many people take one of the options to restrict the use of their personal and sensitive information.

Further information is available from:

* The Guardian 15th March First test launched of NHS's controversial 'Spine' database
* E Health Insider Starting gun fired for Summary Care Record roll-out

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