Letters Big health data

Learn from the mistakes of care.data

BMJ 2016; 354 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.i4289 (Published 05 August 2016) Cite this as: BMJ 2016;354:i4289
  1. Nick Mann, GP and NHS osteopath
  1. Well Street Surgery, London E9 7TA, UK
  1. drnickmann{at}gmail.com

Care.data’s massive potential for knowledge and research was wasted. It failed because of the poor regard people have for data accountability beyond distribution, including deductive re-identification for discriminative commercial purposes, such as assessing insurability.

The development of care.data to exploit the commercial value of datasets was clearly evident in its structure. Patients’ fears about privacy were well founded.1 I …

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