Saturday, 14 February 2015

Scotland`s `womb to tomb` database

The Scottish Government is inviting written responses to the following joint consultation by 25 February 2015:

"The Scottish Government and National Records of Scotland ("NRS") are undertaking a joint consultation on the proposed amendments to the National Health Service Central Register (Scotland) Regulations 2006. The proposals are to enable certain data contained on the National Health Service Central Register ("the NHSCR") to be shared with certain named bodies and for the NHSCR to hold additional postcode data."

From Amberhawk:

"The Scottish Government’s plans are outlined in a document entitled "Consultation on proposed amendments to the National Health Service Central Register (Scotland) Regulations 2006". The intention is to transform the current NHS Central Register ("NHSCR") so it can be accessed by more bodies, to increase the number of individuals recorded in the Register, and to use a Unique Citizen Reference Number ("UCRN") for each citizen."

"The NHSCR can then be accessed by well over 120 Scottish public authorities (including police, prison, national security, visas and immigration) and certain publically owned companies..."

"Those who lived through the Westminster debates concerning the Identity Card Act a decade ago will recall that a population register functionality, known as the Citizen Information Project, formed 20% of the business case that supported the creation of a National Identity Register. The proposals create this population register functionality for Scotland..."

"Like the Identity Card Act 2006, there are wide ranging powers that allow personal data to be obtained or disclosed; powers which are subject to minimal scrutiny..."

"The current NHSCR which has been established under section 57 of the Local Electoral Administration and Registration Services (Scotland) Act 2006 ("LEARS"). According to the Registrar’s website it contains the following details:"
NHS Number - for babies born in Scotland, the civil registration number of their birth, or a special number given to a patient who was born outside Scotland but who registers with a Scottish doctor;
Community Health Index number (this is an identifier used by the NHS in Scotland);
Surname, forenames, any previous names and mother’s birth surname;
Sex; Date and place of birth; Postcode and address reference number;
Date of enlistment and discharge for Armed Forces personnel;
Current and any previous Health Board (or health authority in the rest of the UK) area of GP registration (and equivalent information for Armed Forces personnel and their families);
Medical research information for people who are registered as having had cancer, or are part of a medical research project;
Date of death or when contact with the patient has been lost.
"According to the Consultation, powers are to be used to add "Postcode and a unique property reference number" to the NHSCR. This is slightly confusing as "Postcode and address reference number", according to the Registrar General’s website, is already held in the NHSCR (see list above). About another 100 identified bodies could gain access to details on the Register for their purposes."

"A Unique Citizen Reference Number (UCRN) for each citizen will also be developed and used as part of identity assurance processes (i.e. when an individual establishes a digital identity, a UCRN will be created and added to the NHSCR in relation to that individual and used when an individual obtains service electronically from a public body). The Consultation explains that "bodies that have access to the UCRN and to be provided with data from the NHSCR".  



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