'Tens of thousands of NHS patients have had their confidential health records shared for years against their wishes, ministers have admitted.
Health minister Jackie Doyle-Price revealed that NHS Digital, the national “safe haven” for patient data, failed to honour the wishes of 150,000 patients.
Under NHS data rules, patients can consent for their data to only be shared with the organisations Digital, as long as it is not shared further in an identifiable form for purposes beyond their direct care.
But in fact around 150,000 patients who opted for this since March 2015 saw their wishes over-ruled.
In a statement to Parliament, Ms Doyle Price said the error occurred after a major IT supplier failed to register their preferences.
”NHS Digital recently identified a supplier defect in the processing of historical patient objections to the sharing of their confidential health data.” she said.
“As a result, these objections were not upheld by NHS Digital in its data disseminations.”'
Read more: 150,000 medical records shared against patients' wishes in data system glitch
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