The health secretary, Jeremy Hunt, has announced plans to give patients in England access to their entire medical record by 2018, and to let them read and add to their GP record using their smartphone within a year.
Hurrah! More openness! Who could object?
Phil Booth, coordinator of the campaign group MedConfidential, said: “Shoving highly sensitive information to patients via their smartphones really won’t help doctors treat them in 2016, and medical bodies like the Royal College of GPs have already pointed out it could expose the vulnerable to stalking, abuse and coercion, not to mention predatory companies who can’t wait to get their hands on such valuable data.”
Hmmm, given that a few days after I broke my arm, I was inundated with ambulance-chasing lawyers calling my mobile & home number (and this could ONLY have been given to them by the NHS) I think that ship has already sailed, Phil…
Organisations representing doctors also expressed misgivings, with the British Medical Association (BMA) warning that vulnerable patients could be coerced by abusive partners to reveal what they had told their doctor.
Can’t they anyway? What makes this a significant change?
Some doctors, especially GPs, are also concerned that, from 2018, notes that they and other health professionals have written in patients’ medical records, which they were never intended to see, will become known to the patients involved.
Well, don’t write anything you wouldn’t like them to see. Simples!
Dr Maureen Baker, chair of the Royal College of GPs, said family doctors were already so busy that they did not have time to monitor and assess information added by patients themselves.
“GPs are under incredible pressure, seeing more patients than ever before, and we simply do not have the resources to analyse data that patients upload to their records as a matter of course,” Baker said.
Oh, my heart bleeds for them!
Face facts, your reign is coming to an end. No more are you little gods. Progress!