Public Attitudes to the Use of Personal Data in Research: A Wellcome Trust Report

The most in-depth research ever into what the public think about patient records being used by commercial organisations has revealed that the majority are in favour as long as there is a clear public benefit and appropriate safeguards are in place.

 The Wellcome Trust commissioned Ipsos MORI to carry out a major piece of social science research, including workshops with over 200 people and a survey of 2000 people. The research, published today, aims to inform a review that Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt has asked Dame Fiona Caldicott, the National Data Guardian, to conduct.

The findings of the Caldicott Review, which are expected imminently, will provide advice on the wording for a new model of consents and opt-outs, to enable patients to make an informed decision about how identifiable information in their health records is used.

Penetration Security Testing

Grampian Data Safe Haven (DaSH), our secure research facility for handling health, administrative and research data successfully underwent specialist internal and external Penetration Security Testing in May. The testers reported that, “The security posture from inside the Safehaven network is very strong”.  One “medium risk” relating to software development facilities in the safe haven has been removed. Mr Brian Henderson, Director of IT Services, said, 'I am delighted with the testing report. This reflects a lot of hard work by the IT Services team.' DaSH currently supports 30+ research teams analysing their data in the secure 'virtual' research facility.