Posted on July 3, 2018 by staff

NHS accidentally discloses data on 150,000 patients


The NHS has admitted to accidentally disclosing data on 150,000 patients who had objected to their personal health data being shared.

The ‘data breach’ dates back to March 2015 and was caused by a coding error by IT supplier TPP.

Health minister Jackie Doyle-Price made the announcement in a statement to Parliament, stressing that NHS Digital had “acted swiftly” and rectified the error as soon as it came to their attention.

“There is not, and has never been, any risk to patient care as a result of this error,” she stressed.

Doyle-Price added that all TPP GP practices will be informed to make sure they are aware of the issue and can provide reassurance to any affected patients.

“TPP has apologised unreservedly for its role in this matter and has committed to work with NHS Digital so that errors of this nature do not occur again,” said Doyle-Price.

“This will ensure that patients’ wishes on how their data is used are always respected and acted upon.”

The 150,000 affected patients had objected to their confidential health data being shared for purposes other than their individual care.

The incident meant their data was shared for clinical audits and research that help drive improvements in outcomes for patients.

The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) and the National Data Guardian for Health and Care have been made aware of the incident.