Smartphone use by Doctors could destroy patient confidentiality

Smartphone use by Doctors could destroy patient confidentiality
Doctors have increasingly been using smartphones for their practices. A survey conducted among 287 doctors and 564 nurses, who toil at five hospitals in London that are part of the National Health Service (NHS) trust, found that 65% of doctors send SMS messages to colleagues about patients. 46% of the Doctors used their smartphone to send a picture of a wound to another doctor. One-third of the doctors used a third-party messaging app to share information about patients.

Making the public aware about these possible security breaches, is part of a campaign being waged by the medConfidential campaign group. The group worries that by sharing information, Doctors unwittingly are giving away information about patients that is supposed to be confidential.

The group notes that some messages about patients are being sent from one personal device to another, unprotected without encryption. One spokesman for the group added, "What happens if the message gets sent to a wrong number?" To prevent things like this from happening, there is a call by the report's six authors for the NHS to develop guidelines for the use of smartphones by Doctors. The six co-authors include former health minister Lord Darzi.


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source: TheGuardian

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10 Comments

1. Mxyzptlk unregistered

Last thing we need is medical records leaking out or big G watching and making "relevant" ads.

7. hassoups

Posts: 473; Member since: Jun 06, 2013

first thing we need is you seeing a doctor.

9. pmsap

Posts: 105; Member since: May 26, 2015

Let's say there is a risk (as thus a cost) to sharing data. Let's now assume that by sharing data across colleagues, the accuracy of diagnosis increases and thus the recovery of the patient (the benefits). What you have to know is that if the benefits outweighs the costs. That's all what you/we need to know.

2. ThePython

Posts: 902; Member since: May 08, 2013

Omg Dr. House!

3. zeeBomb

Posts: 2318; Member since: Aug 14, 2014

Hey! Its the guy from house!

4. Bernoulli

Posts: 4362; Member since: Sep 01, 2012

Haha while this character fits the article better, would have loved to see David Tennant (Doctor Who) with his nokia as he calls any time from anywhere in the future/past/present universe.

5. King_bilo

Posts: 115; Member since: May 20, 2015

Well, i dont know about you but if my doctor consults another doctor for a second opinion free of charge without my knowledge, I'm perfectly ok with it. Second, while the data might not be secure, except in the instance of getting a second opinion (which almost always leaves out the identity of the patient) I fail to see an instance where a doctor would use a mobile phone to give another doctor information about a patient. I know there are official hand over procedures in place when patients are referred from one doctor to another. But hey..

6. JC557

Posts: 1925; Member since: Dec 07, 2011

House: People are dumb. This is a smartphone yet it makes people who use them even dumber... well except me of course.

8. legiloca

Posts: 1676; Member since: Nov 11, 2014

That is just f**king disgusting.. uhhhh that's enough internet for us today

10. LikeMyself

Posts: 631; Member since: Sep 23, 2013

In what ways will the patient be affected apart from having better diagnosis? Who cares about who got colonoscopy, Alzheimer's, STDs? What will the hacker do with that info? Like seriously? /Dr need to learn how to communicate now, along with the fact that there's already too many stupid rules to be followed by Dr??

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