Feeds

Cameron: We'll turn NHS patients into real-time drugs lab rats

Unless they remember to opt-out

High performance access to file storage

Prime minister David Cameron said his government is launching a consultation on changing the NHS constitution so that the "default setting" is for patients' data to be used for research unless the patient opts out.

In a speech to the Global Health Policy Summit in London, he said that the UK is going to be the "world leader" in making real-time patient data available for drug development.

"We're going to do this by harnessing the incredible data collected by our National Health Service," he said. "This will make anonymised data available to scientists and researchers on a scale never seen before."

In the prime minister's view this will help make the UK the best place in the world to carry out cutting edge research.

Nick Pickles, director of privacy and civil liberties campaign group Big Brother Watch, said that patients should have control over their medical records and that they are not for the government to give away.

"Anonymised data is not always as anonymous as it sounds, as has been warned by academics and medical professionals," he said. "Once the floodgates are opened it will only be a matter of time before data is re-identified and used for other purposes.

"The government urgently needs to confirm that these proposals will not create a national database of everyone's DNA by the back door and legislate to put into law that this must not happen."

This article was originally published at Government Computing.

Government Computing covers the latest news and analysis of public sector technology. For updates on public sector IT, join the Government Computing Network here.

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Android engineer: We DIDN'T copy Apple OR follow Samsung's orders
Veep testifies for Samsung during Apple patent trial
One year on: diplomatic fail as Chinese APT gangs get back to work
Mandiant says past 12 months shows Beijing won't call off its hackers
EFF: Feds plan to put 52 MILLION FACES into recognition database
System would identify faces as part of biometrics collection
Big Content goes after Kim Dotcom
Six studios sling sueballs at dead download destination
Alphadex fires back at British Gas with overcharging allegation
Brit colo outfit says it paid for 347KVA, has been charged for 1940KVA
Jack the RIPA: Blighty cops ignore law, retain innocents' comms data
Prime minister: Nothing to see here, go about your business
Singapore decides 'three strikes' laws are too intrusive
When even a prurient island nation thinks an idea is dodgy it has problems
Banks slap Olympus with £160 MEEELLION lawsuit
Scandal hit camera maker just can't shake off its past
France bans managers from contacting workers outside business hours
«Email? Mais non ... il est plus tard que six heures du soir!»
Reprieve for Weev: Court disowns AT&T hacker's conviction
Appeals court strikes down landmark sentence
prev story

Whitepapers

Mainstay ROI - Does application security pay?
In this whitepaper learn how you and your enterprise might benefit from better software security.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.