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Eight in ten patients sceptical of data handling by healthcare technologies

by Valeria Fiore
19 December 2017

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Patients would rather not have their data handled by new health tech companies, a survey of 2001 UK residents has shown.

Around 80% of patients believe that health apps should not have access to their personal records, with 84% sharing this view with regards to healthcare technology, because they are unsure of which security measures these companies have in place.

Nearly half of patients revealed that they would not place their trust in online health companies (41%).

PwC’s latest Patients’ Voice Survey, which asked patients who should have access to their records, also found that 88% of respondents don’t know how to access their own records, while 80% have never tried.

On the contrary, around 92% of participants acknowledged the importance of having their data shared across the healthcare system.

PwC Health Industries leader Quentin Cole said: ‘Lack of awareness of how to access records and also how their data is managed, followed by the NHS cyber-attack earlier this year has meant there is a scepticism and mistrust in how their patient records are managed.

‘The NHS needs to address this by educating patients and therefore building their trust. Through this, the window of opportunity for new tech companies will widen.’

These findings come after Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt announced this year that every patient will be able to book a GP appointment or access its health records via an app by the end of next year.