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Sunday 18th February 2018

GPs could be liable for inaccuracies in records

25th March 2010

Family doctors have been warned they may be held legally accountable for any errors in Summary Care Records.


The GPC has now called for the roll-out programme to be stopped after Connecting for Health said poor GP recordkeeping would be to blame for any errors highlighted in the official evaluation of the care record pilots.

The magazine Computer Weekly has reported that researchers had uncovered inaccuracies in records, while The Times claimed the evaluation of them had found life-threatening errors.

GP leaders have expressed a number of concerns including practices reporting a big rise in workload to deal with worried patients; guidance on the quality of data expected from GPs still to be published; and a failure of ministers to respond to a BMA submission that the work involved falls outside GPs’ contractual obligations.

GPC chair Dr Laurence Buckman said patients were booking consultations specifically to talk about concerns over the record and to discuss opting in or out.

Dr Michelle Drage, joint chief executive of Londonwide LMCs, said she feared GPs would be held legally liable if incorrect information in Summary Care Records was used in an emergency.

“The argument is about who is going to carry the can,” she said.

Connecting for Health said it planned to publish good practice guidelines for GPs in the next few months and that no practice will be expected to begin uploading until local GPs have agreed and had training.

The Medical Defence Union said GPs have a legal and ethical responsibility to keep clear and accurate patient records.


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