You have seen the media coverage about NHS plans to share patient information to improve healthcare outcomes. During recent weeks NHS England has heard concerns from patients, GPs and others. Having listened carefully to these concerns they accept that the public need more time to learn about information sharing and we have now extended the care.data public awareness campaign until the Autumn.
• They will begin collecting data from GP surgeries in the Autumn, instead of the spring to allow more time to build understanding of the benefits of using the information, what safeguards are in place, and how people can object if they choose to;
• They will work with patients and professional groups – including the BMA, RCGP, Healthwatch and listen to GPs – to develop additional practical steps to promote awareness with patients and the public, and ensure information is accessible and reaches all sections of the community, including people with disabilities;
• They will look into further measures that could be taken to build public confidence, in particular steps relating to scrutiny of ways in which the information will be used to benefit NHS patients;
NHS England want to build public confidence in this programme so people fully understand the broad range of benefits throughout health and care services that information sharing can bring.
Patients should call the dedicated patient information line on 0300 456 3531 the line is open Monday to Friday, 8am to 8pm and on Saturdays from 9am to 3pm. A text phone service is also available on 0208 7428620
Information about you helps us to provide better care. Information about you and the care you receive is shared, in a secure system, by healthcare staff to support your treatment and care.
It is important that we, the NHS, can use this information to plan and improve all services for all patients. We would like to link information from all the different places where you receive care, such as your GP, hospital and community service, to help us provide a full picture. This will allow us to compare the care you received in one area against the care you received in another, so we can see what has worked best.
Information such as your postcode and NHS number, but not your name, will be used to link your records in a secure system, so your identify is protected. Information which does not reveal your identify can then be used by others, such as researchers and those planning health services, to make sure we provide the best care possible for everyone.
How your information is used and shared is controlled by law and strict rules are in place to protect your privacy.
We need to make sure that you know this is happening and the choices you have.
For further information please click on this link to read the patient information leaflet:
Patient Information Leaflet