NHS England has delayed the roll-out of Care.data, its scheme to create a national database from GP and hospital records of NHS patients, following concerns over how the scheme has been communicated to patients and GPs.
Patient data was due to be collected from April 2014. NHS England had organised a mass mail-out of leaflets to every household in England to promote the scheme and inform patients about how to opt out if they wished. However concerns were raised that the leaflets would not reach many households and that patients were not being adequately informed. The six month postponement is to allow more time for an extensive communications campaign to better inform the public of how the scheme works, what safeguards are in place to protect their medical data, and how to opt out.
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