Feeds

NHS Direct wrongly emailed patients' data

But only to itself, so that's OK

Boost IT visibility and business value

An email sent by the NHS advice service mistakenly disclosed personal information about patients, although it did not leave the health service.

The organisation's annual report for 2008-09 reveals that the information, including the names, addresses, NHS numbers, dates of birth and clinical data of about 100 patients, was disclosed without authorisation in October last year.

In a statement to GC News, NHS Direct said that this happened when a spreadsheet was emailed to three people in error. The recipients were two project managers working in separate parts of the NHS, as well as an NHS Direct staff member.

"The staff involved acted immediately and the incident was realised and contained within 12 hours and the data deleted," said a spokesperson for NHS Direct. "None of the information went into the public domain and the incident was reported to the information commissioner."

She added: "NHS Direct takes data protection very seriously and we regularly review our processes and train our staff in order to ensure that we fulfil our responsibilities in this area."

The annual report also says that during 2008-09 NHS Direct answered about 5m calls. The agency says that more than 50% of these calls were handled entirely by NHS Direct, relieving pressure elsewhere on the health service. It has developed decision support software and provided further training for staff with the aim of improving this further during the coming year.

This article was originally published at Kable.

Kable's GC weekly is a free email newsletter covering the latest news and analysis of public sector technology. To register click here.

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
Just TWO climate committee MPs contradict IPCC: The two with SCIENCE degrees
'Greenhouse effect is real, but as for the rest of it ...'
Adam Afriyie MP: Smart meters are NOT so smart
Mega-costly gas 'n' 'leccy totting-up tech not worth it - Tory MP
'Blow it up': Plods pop round for chat with Commonwealth Games tweeter
You'd better not be talking about the council's housing plans
Arrr: Freetard-bothering Digital Economy Act tied up, thrown in the hold
Ministry of Fun confirms: Yes, we're busy doing nothing
Help yourself to anyone's photos FOR FREE, suggests UK.gov
Copyright law reforms will keep m'learned friends busy
Apple smacked with privacy sueball over Location Services
Class action launched on behalf of 100 million iPhone owners
UK government officially adopts Open Document Format
Microsoft insurgency fails, earns snarky remark from UK digital services head
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Backing up Big Data
Solving backup challenges and “protect everything from everywhere,” as we move into the era of big data management and the adoption of BYOD.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.