Press comment: NHS Database roll out delayed

Responding to news that NHS England is to delay the roll out of the database:

Nick Pickles, director of Big Brother Watch, said: “NHS England has failed to properly communicate to patients or GPs what this new database involves, how it affects our medical records and what the risks are. The scheme’s benefits are no justification for not properly informing people what will happen and a delay is the right thing to do to maintain public confidence and ensure people have an opportunity to opt-out.

“Our medical records contain some of our most private information and any changes to how they are used should not be rushed into. NHS England should now write to patients individually, including an opt-out form, explaining the scheme and allowing people to make an informed choice about what happens to their medical records.”