Caldicott 2 and patient data

BMJ 2013; 346 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.f2260 (Published 24 April 2013)
Cite this as: BMJ 2013;346:f2260

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  1. Paul Taylor, reader in health informatics
  1. 1Centre for Health Informatics and Multiprofessional Education, University College London, London N19 5LW, UK
  1. p.taylor{at}ucl.ac.uk

Adds a new principle and rejects commissioning groups’ claim of entitlement to access

Sixteen years ago Fiona Caldicott was commissioned to review the use of patient data in the NHS.1 That review set out six principles for the protection of patient confidentiality and recommended the appointment of what became known as Caldicott guardians. A lot has changed since then—patient access to electronic records is a reality, clinical research increasingly uses routinely collected data, and the organisational and legislative framework of the NHS has been transformed. An updated “Information Governance Review” has just been published, again the work of a team led by Caldicott.2

The first review was exclusively concerned with the non-clinical use of patient data. The six principles resulting from the review aimed to preserve patients’ trust by restricting the flow of information out of patient records. The current review recognises that concerns about information governance have also affected the clinical use of information. A seventh principle has therefore been added to correct the overly cautious stance that some clinicians have adopted. This principle states that: “the duty to …

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