Feeds

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

Unless they remember to opt-out

Maximizing your infrastructure through virtualization

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.

Top three mobile application threats

More from The Register

next story
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
US judge: YES, cops or feds so can slurp an ENTIRE Gmail account
Crooks don't have folders labelled 'drug records', opines NY beak
ONE EMAIL costs mining company $300 MEEELION
Environmental activist walks free after hoax sent share price over a cliff
UK government officially adopts Open Document Format
Microsoft insurgency fails, earns snarky remark from UK digital services head
You! Pirate! Stop pirating, or we shall admonish you politely. Repeatedly, if necessary
And we shall go about telling people you smell. No, not really
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
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.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Seven Steps to Software Security
Seven practical steps you can begin to take today to secure your applications and prevent the damages a successful cyber-attack can cause.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.