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New concerns over NPfIT after staff “viewed celebrity’s record”

19 September 2007

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New concerns have been raised over the government’s controversial NHS IT upgrade after it was reported that staff managed to view a celebrity’s medical record.

Papers presented at a board meeting of North Tees Primary Care Trust (PCT) apparently detailed the security breach by more than 50 workers.

But officials said the incident affected another trust, and the case was simply being used as an example.

The government and NHS Connecting for Health both insist systems for accessing records online under the National Programme for IT (NPfIT) are secure.

Computer Weekly magazine said the issue over the celebrity’s record was detailed in the trust’s board papers from March.

They said: “A new security risk to be monitored has been identified as part of the Care Records Guarantee (CRG).

“This risk is around staff inappropriately accessing patient’s records who are not part of their case load.

“It was noted in an audit that a recent admission of a celebrity to a hospital had revealed over 50 staff viewing the patient record.”

The trust said in a statement: “This incident is unrelated to North Tees PCT and occurred in an unknown trust.

“North Tees PCT is satisfied that it has security measures in place to address such an incident should it occur.”

A spokesman for NHS Connecting for Health said: “Individual breaches or patient situations cannot be commented on for obvious reasons.”

NHS Connecting for Health

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