This is the last article you can read this month
You can read more article this month
You can read more articles this month
Sorry your limit is up for this month
CORPORATIONS will be licking their lips at the prospect of accessing NHS patient data, campaigners charged today, as Labour attacked government plans to share medical records with third parties.
Labour urged the NHS and Health Secretary Matt Hancock to pause the General Practice Data for Planning and Research scheme, amid fears that trust between GPs and their patients could be undermined.
In a letter to Mr Hancock and NHS Digital head Sarah Wilkinson, shadow public health minister Alex Norris said he backed the principle of improved data collaboration to help fight Covid-19, but he warned the system was not without risk and called for more consultation on the proposals.
The plans, also criticised by the Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP) and the British Medical Association (BMA), will see data collected over the last 10 years from GP surgeries in England added to a central anonymised database, with new information added on a rolling basis as doctors receive it.
The scheme will allow some private-sector organisations access to patient data, with approval from advisory groups. People only have until June 23 to opt out of the scheme.
Pascale Robinson of the We Own It campaign group warned: “Private companies looking to profit from the information it provides will be licking their lips at the prospect of making millions.
“While there is no doubt that access to patient data has the potential to deliver huge benefits for public health, any transfer of records has to be consensual [and] done with adequate safeguards.
“This approach falls short on all of those accounts and represents a blatant privatisation of patients’ data. It is utterly reprehensible and has to be stopped.”
Keep Our NHS Public co-chair Dr John Puntis said: “The government’s opaque and underhanded approach to data harvesting will undermine public trust in the NHS, with the potential for damaging long-term consequences.”
A government spokesperson said the Covid-19 vaccine rollout was dependent upon access to patient data.
“The new programme for collecting data has been developed in collaboration with doctors, patients and data, privacy and ethics experts to improve systems for data collection.
“We continue to engage with the BMA and RCGP, and remain committed to being transparent with the public.”
You can’t buy a revolution, but you can help the only daily paper in Britain that’s fighting for one by joining the 501 club.
Just £5 a month gives you the opportunity to win one of 17 prizes, from £25 to the £501 jackpot.
By becoming a 501 Club member you are helping the Morning Star cover its printing, distribution and staff costs — help keep our paper thriving by joining!
You can’t buy a revolution, but you can help the only daily paper in Britain that’s fighting for one by become a member of the People’s Printing Press Society.
The Morning Star is a readers’ co-operative, which means you can become an owner of the paper too by buying shares in the society.
Shares are £1 each — though unlike capitalist firms, each shareholder has an equal say. Money from shares contributes directly to keep our paper thriving.
Some union branches have taken out shares of over £500 and individuals over £100.
You can’t buy a revolution, but you can help the only daily paper in Britain that’s fighting for one by donating to the Fighting Fund.
The Morning Star is unique, as a lone socialist voice in a sea of corporate media. We offer a platform for those who would otherwise never be listened to, coverage of stories that would otherwise be buried.
The rich don’t like us, and they don’t advertise with us, so we rely on you, our readers and friends. With a regular donation to our monthly Fighting Fund, we can continue to thumb our noses at the fat cats and tell truth to power.
Donate today and make a regular contribution.