Nevertheless, the FOI disclosures reveal four protection breaches involving hospital data considering that 2009.
They include a significant incident in 2011 in which a laptop containing particulars of 8.3 million individuals was stolen from an unlocked shop area at the headquarters of NHS Central London strategic overall health authority.
A report on on the breach reveals that there was ample detail in the records to identify individual patients.
Officials broke simple NHS security measures by employing a laptop which was not encrypted, creating it effortless for strangers to access the information, which had been deleted but could be effortlessly recovered.
It states: “The information downloaded to the laptop was disclosive information the data downloaded (full postcode, age on admission, sex and ethnicity) could be utilized to determine an individual either immediately or by linking to other publically accessible data.”
In three other incidents, unauthorised members of the public and NHS employees have been offered data which could determine individuals, and in another breach, data from hospital records was sent via regular submit, putting it at danger of currently being misplaced or stolen.
The revelation comes amid increasing concern privacy campaigners and medics about whether patient data is effectively safe.
In February, the controversial care.data project to collect GP information from health-related information was delayed by 6 months simply because of the scale of opposition.
There had been fears data could be passed on to firms delivering wellness care insurance or be at threat from hackers.
Phil Booth, coordinator of privacy campaigners medConfidential, stated: “Despite claiming a perfect record for safety, we now locate that patients’ hospital info has been breached several instances – though officials have observed match not to disclose the total information.
“Were a computer containing such delicate data to be offered on eBay or make its way onto the black industry, who understands how numerous patients’ lives and privacy would be permanently wrecked,” he stated.
The Health and Social Care Details Centre (HSCIC) which is now accountable for NHS central information, mentioned the breaches occurred when a predecessor organisation was in charge, and said the breach in London had been committed by an external organisation.
A spokesman stated: “No patient harm was brought on and every situation has been thoroughly investigated and appropriate action taken.”