Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Electronic Medical Records

Dr Crippen has written several times about the government's £6.8 billion pound initiative to put everybody's medical records on a centralised national computer system (for example, here and here). I feel he is right to be concerned.

Today I read that the private telecomms operator Patientline is raising the prices of its telephone services for patients in many UK hospitals by 160%! I won't criticise them for providing bedside television to the under-16s for free but ...

However, that is not what this post is about ... as a result of the above story I visited Patientline's website and found that they offer a range of other telecomms services to the NHS Trusts including keeping electronic patient records that can be consulted at the patient's bedside. No mention here of data protection and security. I wonder if any of the PCTs have taken up the service

John - we have every reason to be concerned at the Spine, but having my medical records held electronically by a private company that is £80 million in debt is perhaps even more scary!

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