At the end of April the Information Commissioner’s Office fined The Aneurin Bevan Health Board for breaching the Data Protection Act and today they fined Central London Community Healthcare (CLCH) NHS Trust £90,000.

The CLCH breach first occurred in March 2011, after patient lists from the Pembridge Palliative Care Unit, intended for St John’s Hospice, were faxed to the wrong recipient. The individual informed the Trust in June that they had been receiving the patient lists – around 45 faxes over a three month period – but had shredded them.

The patient lists contained sensitive personal data relating to 59 individuals, including medical diagnoses and information relating to their domestic situations and resuscitation instructions.

The ICO’s investigation found that the Trust failed to have sufficient checks in place to ensure that sensitive information sent by fax was delivered to the correct recipient. The trust also failed to provide sufficient data protection guidance and training to the member of staff concerned.

Stephen Eckersley, the ICO’s Head of Enforcement said:

“Patients rely on the NHS to keep their details safe. In this case Central London Community Healthcare NHS Trust failed to keep their patients sensitive information secure. The fact that this information was sent to the wrong recipient for three months without anyone noticing, makes this case all the more worrying.”

Read the summary of the April fine “Information Commissioner finally fines the NHS for a breach of the Data Protection Act

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