Advertising campaign highlights value of medical record data

BMJ 2014; 348 doi: (Published 13 January 2014) Cite this as: BMJ 2014;348:g211
  1. Nigel Hawkes
  1. 1London

Eight UK medical research organisations have launched a campaign promoting the use of anonymised medical records to improve healthcare. They fear that a new leaflet from NHS England, which details plans to access patients’ data, will alarm some people and cause them to opt out, potentially damaging the usefulness of the database.

The original plan had been to begin extracting patients’ data from GPs in autumn last year, but this was pushed back to March 2014 after GPs complained they had not been given enough time to inform patients of their right to opt out. NHS England agreed to launch a national awareness campaign to ensure that nobody could claim that …

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