Another loss of health records from a GP surgery… this time in the UK

August 5, 2014 |

Another loss of health records in the UK.  In Patient record probe is underway at GP surgery the Nuneaton News reports on a bag of patient records being found on a street. The Information Commissioner has not been involved, at least in the story, but is likely to be.  Each case needs to be considered on its facts and in this case the records appeared to have found their way onto a street courtesy of a theft.  Clearly that is a mitigating factor but it may beg the question as to the quality of the security.

It provides:

AN INVESTIGATION is ongoing after a bag of patient records from a Bedworth surgery was found on the street.

Paperwork containing confidential information from patients at Dr Reily and Partners at the Bedworth Health Centre was found by a member of the public in Nuneaton.

It is believed that details including the names, addresses, dates of birth and NHS numbers of more than 1,000 patients were inside the bag.

It is claimed to have also contained private emails from the practice’s manager Elizabeth Gilbey to another member of staff.

The bag and its contents, which are believed to have been stolen, were handed into the police after being found dumped at an undisclosed location.

The News was made aware of the incident by an anonymous member of the public who was ‘shocked and horrified’ to find the bag.

A letter to the News from the concerned resident said: “I was shocked and horrified to find it was all patient information from Dr Reily and Partners at Bedworth Health Centre.”

The letter added: “I have family who are with this doctors’ surgery who are appalled that personal information has been left for anybody to see and used to their advantage.”

Elizabeth Gilbey, practice manager, confirmed that an investigation is ongoing into the theft of the records and apologised to patients at the practice.

She said: “We are investigating an incident in which some patient information was found by a member of the public following a theft and handed in to the police.

“We take the security of our data very seriously and will be reviewing our systems and contacting any patients affected.

“We are very sorry for any distress this may cause to our patients and would encourage anyone with concerns to get in touch with us.”

No further information had been disclosed about the incident at the time of going to press.

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