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Government says 99% of patients have no issues joining NHS Spine database

11th June 2008

Less than 1% of patients have so far refused to have a summary patient care record contained in the NHS Spine database.

In response to a parliamentary question, health minister Ben Bradshaw said that up to 30 April, 614,000 adult patients had been sent an information pack about summary care records. Of these, just 5,000 "have indicated to their general practitioner or to the primary care trust their wish not to have a summary care record."  The comments come after numerous stories about security breaches in the public sector.

Recent research from data integration specialist Quicksilva found that 88% of British citizens are unconfident or very unconfident about how safely their personal data is currently being transferred between government departments. However, these latest government figures reveal that despite this many people still recognise the need for joined-up government to improve services.

Gayna Hart, Managing Director of Quicksilva, comments: “The Government is playing catch up in its approach to secure information transfer and the public remains unconvinced. Despite this, the new government evidence suggests that most citizens understand the wider benefits of the NHS Spine Database such as tailored services and reduced administration. There are many advantages to information sharing and it can be achieved competently using secure messaging to integrate systems electronically.?

Interestingly, Quicksilva’s research found that six out of 10 people would like to have access to what personal information the government holds on them, with 100% of people saying they’d like secure access online.

 

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