Department of Health advisor believes patients should be able to control their medical records

Does medical data belong to the patient?

According to Department of Health advisor Dame Fiona Caldicott, patients should be able to correct mistakes in their medical records and have control over them the way customers would over bank statements, as long as they can’t alter their medical histories.

Speaking at the E-Health Insider Live conference held in Birmingham on November 6-7, she said she believes medical data belongs to the patient and to this end new record systems were being developed which were directly managed by the patient.

“They control what’s in them and they work with the clinicians in order to ensure the record is up to date,” she said.

She also said that the main problem facing the information governance review, which she is leading, is that doctors and patients have a “fear of sharing“, especially because of media coverage of data breaches.

The information governance review will make recommendations on the issue early next year.

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