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Reaction: Government’s Information Strategy

Read all the reaction on the plans laid out by the DH in their IT strategy published today.

Read the full story here.


‘There are GP surgeries which have been pioneering online booking and repeat prescriptions for a while now so we would support the wider implementation of this, as long as it doesn’t impact on patients without IT access.’  

‘However, we would caution against the potential use of email for consultations, because compared to a telephone or face-to-face consultation it is difficult for GPs to assess someone quickly and safely this way.’

‘We believe patients should have access to their health records but we’d want to be satisfied that their records would remain secure before this was implemented.’

Dr Laurence Buckman, GPC chair


 ‘While many GPs may encourage patients to get more involved with their own healthcare provision, it is important to consider how well patients will understand the information their GP has recorded about them, and if having sight of the records may cause anxiety and create additional workload for GPs as they could have to spend additional time explaining what has been written in patient notes.’

 Dr Jennifer Dixon, director of the Nuffield Trust


 ‘Proposals to allow patients to have greater online access to more services is a positive step forward. And encouraging greater use of the NHS number will enable staff across health and local authorities to keep a consistent and up-to-date record of a patient’s journey through the service. The NHS now has a real responsibility to deliver on these promises and make the NHS a truly modern health service.’

Mike Farrar, NHS Confederation chief executive


‘Publication of information and data, openness and transparency will support us to drive improvement and innovation across the country, as everyone will be able to see for themselves the outcomes achieved for our patients.’

Sir David Nicholson, chief executive of the NHS Commissioning Board


‘We welcome this strategy as a strong vision document. What is less clear is how the vision will result in real change – the improvements patients, services users, their carers and families want to see.’

Jeremy Taylor, chief executive of National Voices, a coalition of more than 130 health and social care charities


 ‘We welcome the new plans to make test results, repeat prescriptions and booking doctor’s appointments available online. This will help to make life easier for cancer patients undergoing treatment at an incredibly difficult time in their lives.’

Duleep Allirajah, head of policy at Macmillan Cancer Support


‘Online access is not new. Patients have had the ability to book and cancel appointments and manage their repeat prescriptions online for some time.’

Dr Mike Robinson of INPS, IT systems supplier to GPs