For immediate release – Tuesday, 18 February 2014
In response to the announcement by Tim Kelsey that NHS England will be postponing the uploading of confidential patient data under the care.data scheme for 6 months , Phil Booth, coordinator of medConfidential  said:
“Finally, officials at NHS England have seen reason. To upload millions of patients’ confidential data without providing full and proper information or seeking consent would have been the largest breach of confidence in NHS history.
“It still could be, if NHS England does not now write to each patient in England individually by name, explaining the risks it has acknowledged as well as the claimed benefits. And this time they’d better not forget to include an opt out form.
“This delay will mean nothing if the care.data programme is not overhauled to provide patients with a clear and constantly updated picture of exactly who will have access to their data, why and what for. The entire scheme could do with a radical dose of transparency.”
– ends –
Notes for editors
1) See, e.g. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-26239532
2) medConfidential campaigns for confidentiality and consent in health and social care. Our goal is to see that every flow of data into, within and out of the NHS is consensual, safe and transparent. Founded in January 2013 in response to the imminent and serious threat posed by radical changes in the way patient health information is to be collected and passed on, medConfidential is an independent, non-partisan organisation working with patients and medics, service users and care professionals. Opt out forms and letters available here: www.medconfidential.org/how-to-opt-out/
For further information or for immediate or future interview, please contact Phil Booth, coordinator of medConfidential, on 07974 230 839 or firstname.lastname@example.org