US Health Insurance systems requires national database of ALL GP registered patients healthcare records!
The Pandemic used as an excuse to collect and provide access to near-real-time patient’s data from GP Practices to NHS Digital who then share it with local authorities, health insurance companies, universities and overseas organisations!
Opt-out via NHS Digital website link does no such thing and is misleading!
It still allows GPs to send your data records to them and alleged annonimised data,
including your name, address, NHS Number and postcode
to be identifiable!
USE the Med.Confidential link at end of the article, to fully Opt out
The choice you make applies to publicly funded care in England only!
Those following the privatisation and transformation of the NHS into the US healthcare model as reported on this website, will know that the strategy of the last ten years of Tory Government is to privatise the NHS stealthily!
The increase in US healthcare and UK private healthcare companies into both the NHS and GP services along with the removal of Care Commissioning Groups (CCG) replacing them with 42 autonomous Integrated Care Systems, privately run and all under the NHS logo; is the proof of the destruction of the NHS.
If you live in England, all your encounters with your GP – information about your physical, mental and sexual health – could be ‘sold’ to third parties
The government wants your GP data, and it hasn’t given GPs much of a choice!
From 1 July this year, if you’re registered with a GP in England, the government will be taking a copy of every medical event your GP recorded on their systems since you first registered with them. (Your children’s records, too, if you have children.)
According to the NHS Digital website, the events – called ‘codes’ – it will collect include: “Data about diagnoses, symptoms, observations, test results, medications, allergies, immunisations, referrals, recalls and appointments, including information about physical, mental and sexual health”.
Every single one of these events will be linked to your NHS number, your full postcode and your date of birth. Does that sound like “anonymous” data to you? (The ‘pseudonyms’ that will be used to obscure those bits of information are readily reversible, and the body running the database freely admits it has the ability to do so.)
All your encounters with your GP, once copied to the central database, will be “disseminated” for payment to third parties, including companies outside the NHS.
In case you find that hard to believe, this year’s price list can be seen in the pic below to the left – Click to enlarge - for the data already held centrally, such as that of your hospital visits. Did you have any idea your medical data was worth so much... or so little?
Once it has been taken, your GP data – much more sensitive than data about hospital visits – will never be deleted.
You’d be forgiven for not knowing any of this, because the government is making little effort to tell you.
Indeed, NHS Digital – the central NHS body that health secretary Matt Hancock last month ordered to extract all of this health data – appears not to have sent out a press release, announcing the programme via a news item on its own website on 12th May.
You might, at this point, be getting a sense of deja vu.
The last time the government tried to get its hands on our GP data, through the notorious ‘care.data’ programme announced in 2013, there was an outcry from patients and professionals. The scheme collapsed, with the government unable – or unwilling – to convincingly reassure people about who exactly would end up having access to our GP records.
This new 2021 plan is the government's failed 2014 programme, 'care.data', on steroids
This new 2021 plan is care.data on steroids. It’s far bigger, taking far more data. It’s far more intrusive, collecting highly sensitive codes, such as those relating to sexual health or drug and alcohol history, that even care.data wouldn’t dare touch. And it’s being rushed out in far more of a hurry – with less notice, less communication, and less time to act than in 2013 – while we’re in a pandemic and GPs are “overwhelmed” with a backlog of care and delivering vaccinations, as the BBC reported on 27 May.
At least care.data sent a junk mail leaflet to every household in the land about its planned massive data slurp, kicking up such a stink that people got wind of how to opt out of it. Indeed, part of the reason for the scheme’s collapse is that so many people did exactly that.
So the main lesson that the government appears to have taken from the care.data debacle is that if you want to obtain people’s GP data, to share with whoever you see fit, you need to do so on the quiet.
NHS Digital’s ‘mythbusting’ web-page about data sharing confusingly directs people to a different, weak ‘opt-out’ link that won’t actually prevent your GP records being taken from 1st July.
So why does the government want your data so badly?
One reason is the good it can do. No one disputes that health data can be used to help with planning, in legitimate ethical research, or to improve systems for health and social care.
But in order to preserve the trust that is necessary to the health of the health system, both doctor-patient confidentiality and public confidence, every use of patients’ data must be consensual, safe, and transparent. After all, your GP record is the most rich and most valuable kind of health data there is; while hospitals treat ‘conditions’ and discharge you, general practice builds lifelong care relationships – and records everything relevant to your medical history; be it your physical, mental or sexual health.
The other reason, and the one the government is talking about the least, is because it’s so valuable to others.
To the “entirely new industries” the government’s life sciences adviser, John Bell, proposed in 2017 as part of its Life Sciences Industrial Strategy which effectively means access to NHS medical records, GP held medical records of patients, and access to date bases held by Government bodies and healthcare providers.
The life-science industry is about utilising data technology, artificial intelligence and commercial technologies such as that made available for smart phones, tablets, laptops and PCs, in place of face to face consultancy with patients by GPs and in order to educate and direct public to determine their own health needs, rather than GPs and hospital consultants. Self-diagnosis and the ability of the healthcare sector to blame patients for their ill-health due to personal lifestyles is already starting to invade public awareness.
The number of 'health apps' and private healthcare now being advertised in the media is testimony to this, along with american voice-overs in order to try and give an impression of authenticity to a largely unaware public.
The Life Sciences strategy document and the involvement of one of the largest US based health data providers involvement with NHS Foundation trusts e.g. University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust, University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust, and King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust to name just three of the over 70 Trusts involved to date.
'Life Sciences' of course is all about profit!
American data company, IQVIA, is already embedded inside over 70 NHS Hospital Trusts and is an essential element of the transformation of the NHS into the American model of Integrated Care Systems. They have provided consultants and data systems to enable all Trusts to become part of Integrated Care Systems, and Their brochure makes it clear that profit is now becoming the motive of healthcare in the UK as in the USA:
'Patient Level Information Costing (PLICS)
Our highly experienced team and market leading solutions allow us to deliver actionable results for your organisation suitable for Acute, Mental Health, Community and Ambulance settings and within Accountable/Integrated Care Systems. End users are able to actively engage with clinicians, helping to drive changes to healthcare delivery and identify real efficiencies. Join over 70 NHS organisations using the IQVIA PLICS solution.'
Please note the term: Accountable/Integrated Care Systems - these are now the replacement for the NHS. All healthcare in England has now been turned into Integrated Care Systems!
Further explanation for why Matt Hancock has instructed all GP practices in England to share their patients medical data, in real-time, can be seen by this statement from IQVIA, the leading US data storing and analytical company in England embedded into the NHS
'NHS Solutions Clinical Coding Analytics - IQVIA provides you with rapid ROI by ensuring better data quality and identifying complex patients to help create a more Integrated Care Model and ensuring the correct income'
Further proof of the transformation of the NHS into a profit orientated business can be read in the IQVIA brochure aimed at ALL NHS foundation rusts and promoted by the Tory Government, Simon Stevens and Matt Hancock:
'Integrated Service Line Reporting (iSLR)Monitoring the financial efficiency of clinical decisions for NHS Trusts to meet the demands of high-level care provision and efficient use of resource and funding, it is crucial that clinicians gain visibility of the financial implications of their clinical decisions'
and this statement regarding their use of your private medical records that Matt Hancock demands that ALL GPs in England are now from 1st July 2021 obligated to share with NHS England, with no explanations as to what use it will be put to; or indeed it's sale:
We transform your data [patient records] into actionable intelligence to support your cip and stp initiatives. IQVIA is a leading authority in costing, benchmarking and analytics in the NHS.
• Our priority is to turn your data into actionable insight that can help transform your business by identifying inefficiencies and enabling best practice
• We guarantee to identify at least £150,000 of clinical variation or your money back!
The documentation concerning all this and the IQVIA brochure containing the above information and more, can be downloaded from this website's E-Library via the 'NHS' category - click the pic above to juts access the brochure.
Profit-seeking corporations, such as IQVIA are already gaining access to copies of patients’ hospital data – often via ‘information intermediaries’, who need only pay a one-off extra £10k to guarantee their customers’ names don’t show up in any public lists.
And even to customers (firms and public bodies) who have broken the rules (or the law) in the past, despite a promise from the government after care.data that those who did so deliberately or repeatedly would face a "one strike" ban from any future access.
And it’s your GP data next.
The additional statutory protections the government added in 2014, limiting data-sharing to being used for the “promotion of health”, clearly haven’t stopped the international trade in patients’ data with US companies, pharma, even big tech – all of whom continue to access the data they’re so hungry for, via “sub-licensees”.
A look at the kind of companies that are already accessing the data, shows them offering services to their customers including market insights for commissioners, strategic market access, even selling back to the NHS... but still NHS Digital says “we don’t approve requests for marketing purposes”.
Maybe it doesn't. Not directly. But it does regularly hand millions of people’s linked hospital histories to companies that serve those who do. And that’s the very same approvals process it will be using for your GP data later this year.
It’s also instructive to look at what has happened to the GP data that has been gathered under the extraordinary pandemic ‘Control of patient information’ powers for nearly a year. We were reassured that COVID-related data would largely be analysed in a highly secure ‘safe setting’, preventing onwards use and dissemination. But MedConfidential's analysis of the official release registers show that nine times out of ten, that ‘safe setting’ has not been used.
So much for reassurances. Trust is not about the good you could do, it’s about the less savoury stuff that still gets done. And no process is secure or trustworthy if there are ways to get around it.
But save your anger at NHS Digital. It’s more scapegoat than instigator; as a statutory body it can, and must, do with data what Matt Hancock and Boris Johnson tell it to do. Hancock directed NHS Digital to do this and not tell you.
The government wants your GP data, and it hasn’t given GPs much of a choice – but you can do something.
Opt out By 23rd June using the official documents required to do so which the NHS Digital wesite does NOT provide you with at all! Click the pic below to access the forms required (as opposed to the NHS Digital misleading forms that do NOT opt you out.
Don't forget that each individual adult in your household has to opt-out, and that includes your children!
It is also worth noting that, according to NHS Digital's privacy statement: The choice you make applies to publicly funded care in England only. So, when you use a private medical service, and eventually ALL NHS healthcare will be privately delivered, your medical records will be shared by default!
Deadline to stop your and your family's personal medical records from being shared with NHS Digital, NHS England and private data companies such as IQVIA, Centene, Palantir to name just three:
See also: NHS Privatisation News Archive and the Unionsafety E-Library for further information and background.
Main parts of this article is published under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International licence
Source: OpenDemocracy / BBC News / The Guardian / NHS Digital / med.Confidential / IQVIA / Life Sciences / Gov.UK / Various private health insurance companies and organisations linked to in the text