06 July 2009

Careful Dave, we need substance not gimmicks

The Times is reporting the Tories have a proposal that Google or Microsoft could hold patient health records:

Patients will be given the option of moving their medical notes to private companies after the Conservatives said that they would replace Labour’s “centrally determined and unresponsive national IT system”

The Tories hope that users will be able to choose from a range of private sector websites, possibly including those operated by Bupa, the healthcare provider. This has raised issues of privacy and security, with MPs and health professionals warning it could hamper doctors’ ability to access medical records quickly in an emergency.

This all sounds like a PR stunt to move the health debate on from Andrew Lansley’s recent embarrassments.   Is cloud computing presently robust and mature enough to hold sensitive data securely that could be assessed in an emergency?  I have my doubts.

This may come over as fresh thinking, but Cameron & Co. should stick to substance.  Chasing headlines with forgettable gimmicks is New Labour's job.

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1 comment:

  1. Well said Howard. If this were to pass it would become like our rail system, completely absurd. I have a German friend who was visiting UK and she said the rail system is the most confusing she's ever come across. From someone who has travelled around the world several times, that certainly takes some beating.