The House of Commons Health & Social Care Committee has, for a second time, called on NHS Digital to immediately stop sharing patient details with the immigration authorities. Expressing deep concern about the Government’s approach to sharing confidential patient information, a report released by the Committee on 15 April 2018 stated: ‘we believe that patients’ addresses, collected for the purposes of health and social care, should continue to be regarded as confidential.’ Read their full report here https://publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201719/cmselect/cmhealth/677/677.pdf
To: Jeremy Hunt, Secretary of State for Health & Social Care and Sarah Wilkinson, Chief Executive of NHS Digital
Stop making our NHS doctors into border guards.
Stop using NHS patients’ personal information to carry out immigration enforcement.
Why is this important?
Fear should never be a reason not to see a doctor but the UK Government has arranged a deal between NHS Digital, the body charged with safeguarding NHS patient records, that allows the Home Office to access vulnerable patients’ information.
IMPACT ON DOCTORS
Doctors are subject to strict confidentiality rules, and know how important it is that their patients trust them. Yet behind their back, NHS Digital is sharing their patients’ information with the Home Office. Doctors should NOT have to tell patients that their information might be used by the Home Office to track them down at their home address. Confidentiality is compromised and doctors are being forced into being border guards. Medical bodies and doctors have slammed the deal, calling on NHS Digital to STOP breaking patient confidentiality.
IMPACT ON PATIENTS
Patients now have a well-founded fear that going to a GP could lead to them being tracked down by the Home Office and put into immigration detention centres. Individuals being targeted by the Home Office include people who have been trafficked to the UK and victims of torture . Doctors of the World UK’s clinics regularly see pregnant women worried that they will be arrested if the go to antenatal appointments and people with serious medical conditions who are too scared to register with a GP.
OUTRAGE FROM MEDICAL BODIES AND MPS:
Doctors, MPs and Medical bodies including the British Medical Association, the Royal Collage of GPs, and Health and Social Care Select Committee have slammed the deal, calling to NHS Digital to #StopSharing patient information immediately.
When signing the petition, please indicate if you are a healthcare professional with the prefix Dr / Nurse / Midwife / other.