BMA warns patients could shun NHS Federated Data Platform

10/11/2023 | The Guardian

The British Medical Association (BMA) has warned the UK government that patients are concerned about the misuse of their personal information by the NHS Federated Data Platform (FDP), especially if the contract is awarded to US technology company Palantir. The creation of the FDP has raised concerns about privacy and trust in the NHS, with patients potentially refusing to share their data due to suspicion surrounding it. In a letter to the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, Steve Barclay, the BMA has expressed "serious concerns" about the FDP, including an alleged lack of public consultation and vetting of bidders on "ethical" grounds, which may encourage patients to avoid it. The BMA's chair, Dr Latifa Patel, stated that the FDP could end up facing the same lack of support that caused the NHS's last two attempts to bring patient data together to fail. There is a need for a full and proper public consultation to establish the scope and scale of the program and to assure patients that their confidential data won't be used for commercial gain, according to Patel.

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