Supermarkets could be given access to medical records!
According to reports, high street pharmacies such as Boots, Tesco and Superdrug will be given access to NHS medical records under a new national scheme which campaigners fear could expose patients to ‘hard sell’ tactics.
The Telegraph reports: ‘Health officials have drawn up plans to send sensitive data from GP surgeries to pharmacies across the country, starting this autumn, without considering the views of patients.’
From this Autumn chemists will be granted access to medical records and NHS patient data in a bid to improve care standards and also boost efficiency.
Although the data would only be available to registered pharmacists, privacy campaigners say that the amount of valuable data would be irresistible to the big providers of pharmacy services.
An NHS England and HSCIC spokesperson said:
“The NHS is not making patient information available for commercial use. A patient’s Summary Care Record will only ever be viewed, with their explicit consent, by authorised, regulated, pharmacy professionals through a secure and controlled system and only with a view to improving patient care. There are strict legal and regulatory standards in place to make sure the information cannot be used for any other purpose. A number of patient groups were consulted as part of the pilot project, and patients were written to directly to provide an opportunity to opt out.”