Medical records

Your letters
Your letters

Like all other households I received an NHS leaflet informing me my medical records will be passed to third parties. But according to NHS England the law says:

“Confidentiality: there are strict laws and regulations to ensure that your health records are kept confidential and can only be accessed by health professionals directly involved in your care. T

“he two most important laws relating to health records are the Data Protection Act (1998) and the Human Rights Act (1998).

“Under the terms of the Data Protection Act (1998) organisations, such as the NHS, must ensure that any personal information it gathers in the course of its work is only used for the stated purpose of gathering the information (which in this case would be to ensure that you receive a good standard of healthcare), and is kept secure. It is a criminal offence to breach the Data Protection Act (1998) and doing so can result in imprisonment.

“The Human Rights Act (1998) also states that everyone has the right to have their private life respected. This includes the right to keep your health records confidential.”

Every patient has an electronic Summary Care Record but, unlike online banking, that data is still inaccessible online directly to patients for checking inaccuracies. And recently the GMC has sanctioned recordings of consultations on mobile phones that is also of concern.

Therefore, for the NHS to pass confidential medical records to third parties without a patient’s consent, and without an opportunity to check that data online, surely it is in breach of the DPA? National newspapers have reported many GPs objecting to this policy as well as thousands of patients.

Joan Wade

Wordsworth Road


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