NHS data platform carries promise but risk, says CSP


The award of a major NHS data contract to US tech firm Palantir must be backed up by security and confidentiality safeguards, the CSP has warned.

Euan McComiskie, health informatics lead at the CSP, said the decision had been expected for some time but ‘does not come without controversy and challenge’.

It is important to recognise that the safe and effective sharing of meaningful health and social care information is absolutely a concept that the CSP supports

‘It is a critical part of the Physiotherapy Health Informatics Strategy (PHIS).

‘However, this should not be at the price of data security and confidentiality.

‘The CSP recognises the concerns of others in the digital health community around the chosen contract awardees, Palantir, and their history in governance of sensitive data.

‘Clearly, huge work is needed across the seven-year project and, as ever, the devil lies in the detail.

‘It remains to be seen whether the current plan for big data, through the Federated Data Platform will be more successful than other failed ventures in the past.

‘The CSP will continue to lobby for inclusion of better quality and quantity of physiotherapy data in England, and elsewhere in the UK, but maintains that confidentiality and security must be included in any endeavours.’

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