[PRESS RELEASE] Kelsey leaves England for down under

medConfidential joins others in recognising the effect Tim Kelsey – Director for Patients and Information at NHS England, Chair of DH’s National Information Board, SRO for care.data and Chair of the care.data Programme Board – has had on the NHS.

Mr Kelsey announced today [1] that he will be resigning from NHS England and leaving the UK for Australia, to work as a commercial director for Telstra Health, a division of Australian telecommunications provider Telstra Corp – which in March this year acquired Dr Foster Intelligence [2], the company Mr Kelsey co-founded in 2000.

Tim’s commitment to the NHS is exemplified by serving his full notice period of 6 months. Earlier this morning, the HSCIC published its Board’s rejection of the Directions for the care.data pathfinders [3], a decision made in July.

Phil Booth, privacy advocate and long-standing scrutineer of Tim’s work, said:

“Tim’s gone back to his old job in the private sector, but serious questions of consent and transparency in NHS England remain unresolved. At the beginning of September Jeremy Hunt announced that responsibility for effective patient consent, long ignored by NHS England under Tim’s rule, had been handed to Dame Fiona Caldicott for resolution.

“We look forward to seeing how public confidence in the handling of NHS patient data will recover under new leadership. NHS England’s strident insistence on commercial re-use of medical records must now be reconsidered.

“Lord Saatchi’s Medical Database Bill, due to be re-published in the Commons the week after Conservative Party Conference, may provide some sign whether Jeremy Hunt has learnt the lessons of care.data for the entire NHS.”

Notes to editors:

1) NHS England announcement of Tim Kelsey’s resignation, 17/9/15: http://www.england.nhs.uk/2015/09/17/tim-kelsey-to-leave/

2) Telstra Health acquires Dr Foster Intelligence, 26/1/15: http://www.drfoster.com/updates/news/dr-foster-acquired-by-telstra-health/
Dr Foster Intelligence was formed when the Department of Health a 50% stake in Dr Foster in 2006, in a deal that was later criticised by the National Audit Office: http://www.nao.org.uk/report/dr-foster-intelligence-a-joint-venture-between-the-information-centre-and-dr-foster-llp/

3) Minutes of HSCIC Board meeting on 15/7/15, published on 17 September 2015, as part of papers for upcoming HSCIC Board meeting on 23/9/15. HSCIC reject the care.data Directions (previously approved by the care.data Programme Board and NHS England Board) for reasons listed on p10 of 300:


medConfidential campaigns for confidentiality and consent in health and social care, seeking to ensure that every flow of data into, across and out of the NHS and care system is consensual, safe and transparent. Founded in January 2013, medConfidential is an independent, non-partisan organisation working with patients and medics, service users and care professionals.

For further information or for immediate or future interview, please contact Phil Booth, coordinator of medConfidential, on phil@medconfidential.org

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