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UK Police Will Have Backdoor Access To Health Records

timothy posted about 9 months ago | from the public-servants'-prerogative dept.

Privacy 108

kc123 writes "David Davis MP, a former shadow home secretary, has told the Guardian that police would be able to access the new central NHS database without a warrant as critics warn of catastrophic breach of trust. The database that will store all of England's health records has a series of 'backdoors' that will allow police and government bodies to access people's medical data. In the past police would need to track down the GP who held a suspect's records and go to court for a disclosure order. Now, they would be able to simply approach the new arms-length NHS information centre, which will hold the records. The idea that police will be able to request information from a central database without a warrant totally undermines a long-held belief in the confidentiality of the doctor-patient relationship."

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We will not have backdoor access to classic (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46194633)

Please post this to new articles if it hasn't been posted yet. (Copy-paste the html from here [pastebin.com] so links don't get mangled!)

On February 5, 2014, Slashdot announced through a javascript popup that they are starting to "move in to" the new Slashdot Beta design. Slashdot Beta is a trend-following attempt to give Slashdot a fresh look, an approach that has led to less space for text and an abandonment of the traditional Slashdot look. Much worse than that, Slashdot Beta fundamentally breaks the classic Slashdot discussion and moderation system.

If you haven't seen Slashdot Beta already, open this [slashdot.org] in a new tab. After seeing that, click here [slashdot.org] to return to classic Slashdot.

We should boycott stories and only discuss the abomination that is Slashdot Beta until Dice abandons the project.
We should boycott slashdot entirely during the week of Feb 10 to Feb 17 as part of the wider slashcott [slashdot.org]

Moderators - only spend mod points on comments that discuss Beta
Commentors - only discuss Beta
  http://slashdot.org/recent [slashdot.org] - Vote up the Fuck Beta stories

Keep this up for a few days and we may finally get the PHBs attention.

-----=====##### LINKS #####=====-----

Discussion of Beta: http://slashdot.org/firehose.pl?op=view&id=56395415 [slashdot.org]

Discussion of where to go if Beta goes live: http://slashdot.org/firehose.pl?op=view&type=submission&id=3321441 [slashdot.org]

Alternative Slashdot: http://altslashdot.org [altslashdot.org] (thanks Okian Warrior (537106) [slashdot.org] )

Re:We will not have backdoor access to classic (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46194675)

Yesterday, I was walking down the sidewalk. Eventually, I took notice of some sexy human feces lying on the left side of the sidewalk. I knew right then that this was the feces I've been searching for all my life! I screamed, "Nice feces!" and then proceeded to spank the piece of feces on the ground. I then gave it a little pinch. I couldn't help but lick the goodies off my hand afterwards.

What became of the feces? Some say that, after it was smashed and violated, it lived out the rest of its life in shame. I say that it was rectum-lickin' good!

Re:We will not have backdoor access to classic (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46194837)

So, the legend of the keyboards full of shit while coding the Beta is true?

Re:We will not have backdoor access to classic (1)

flyneye (84093) | about 9 months ago | (#46194947)

U.K. Police have back door access to each other.
Just like U.S. cops. Gonna go down to the gym and pump each other.
Sayyyy, youre a bossy little fuck for an Anarchist. How bout you quit whining about /.s stinking Beta thats bad as an Alpha and no one likes anyway.
Eventually the people behind the scenes will pull their heads from each others rectums and figure out nobody but them is down with their illogical changes.
Quit whinin like a sister-boy, Mary!

Re:We will not have backdoor access to classic (-1, Troll)

tpstigers (1075021) | about 9 months ago | (#46195107)

My, but this whining about the beta has become tiresome.

We're really terribly sorry you children can't handle change, but we are hopeful that the change will make you all take your trolling elsewhere.

Re:We will not have backdoor access to classic (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46195291)

Eat shit you fucking shill

Re:We will not have backdoor access to classic (1)

tpstigers (1075021) | about 9 months ago | (#46195593)

Whatever you say, Mr. Coward.

Re:We will not have backdoor access to classic (2)

mikael (484) | about 9 months ago | (#46195361)

Until I saw what slashdot beta looked like, I thought they were trolls too. But now that I see that half the browser window is going to be blank just so that the poll
window can have more white space, I sympathize with them. It should be up to each slashdot reader to choose how they read slashdot. Other sites give their forum members a choice in font size, background and text colors, and theme.

Re:We will not have backdoor access to classic (2)

EzInKy (115248) | about 9 months ago | (#46195117)

On February 5, 2014, Slashdot announced through a javascript popup...

You don't block javascript so you don't have to see popups and popunders? What kind of nerd are you?

Re:We will not have backdoor access to classic (1)

qpqp (1969898) | about 9 months ago | (#46198995)

What kind of nerd are you?

One that prefers a modern browser over lynx on my desktop.

You don't block javascript [...] ?

I use adblock for that and delete offending divs on those few sights manually when they block my sight (i.e. right-click -> inspect element -> backspace, or right-click -> block this ad). Why would I block JS if half the www depends on it?
Actual popups & co. are blocked by my browser out of the box.

I wish I could as easily block the beta from happening...

Shut up and beta test it, you lazy bastard. (1)

tqk (413719) | about 9 months ago | (#46198593)

Fneh.

Unbelievable (1)

one eyed kangaroo (215202) | about 9 months ago | (#46194635)

I work in this area (but in another country).
This move would be a quite unbelievable breach of the confidentiality normally expected when personal medical data is involved.
Almost as bad as the BETA, oops.
Cheers.

Re:Unbelievable (3, Interesting)

mrbester (200927) | about 9 months ago | (#46194781)

The fun part being that once your data is on this access-for-all database it isn't yours anymore and thus you have no say in how it is doled out to all and sundry. There can't be a privacy violation if the new data owner (whichever dolt is Secretary of State for health at the time) allows it.

Re:Unbelievable (5, Insightful)

Rich0 (548339) | about 9 months ago | (#46194915)

The fun part being that once your data is on this access-for-all database it isn't yours anymore and thus you have no say in how it is doled out to all and sundry. There can't be a privacy violation if the new data owner (whichever dolt is Secretary of State for health at the time) allows it.

Honestly, I'm fine with SOME change in the traditional doctor/patient relationship. For example, I think it is fine to be able to mine the database in aggregate for information that could be used to improve public health. I'd even be fine with mining the database to find individuals and contacting them to request their consent to participate in studies that would improve public health (and possibly their own).

However, the theme here is that this is about using the data in a way that generally protects the individual interest and which provides a general benefit to everybody, and perhaps even a specific benefit to the individual whose data is accessed.

All of this would be controlled as well - queries of data would be a part of a study and would be reviewed before they could be run to ensure that data being extracted is appropriately de-personalized. If the intent is to contact individuals then the investigators would provide the criteria, and perhaps evaluate a data set which has been blinded (map identifiers to a study-specific set for which the government holds the relationship table). Then the investigator would provide the list of blinded IDs to contact, and the government would handle communications, perhaps directly or through the local doctor. Again everything would be controlled like any other clinical trial in terms of review of consent forms, proper disclosure, etc.

Police access to this data is of course outrageous. This gives individuals incentive to not participate which has impact to both their personal health and public health.

Re:Unbelievable (2)

AmiMoJo (196126) | about 9 months ago | (#46195011)

You can't opt out, you must participate if you want to use the NHS. You can opt out of the data being shared with other doctors, but not the police.

Re:Unbelievable (2)

Rich0 (548339) | about 9 months ago | (#46195165)

You can't opt out, you must participate if you want to use the NHS. You can opt out of the data being shared with other doctors, but not the police.

Oh, I understand that. I'm just saying that this will give people incentive to not receive care from the NHS, or to conceal things from their doctors, or to bribe their doctors to provide advice without updating the database, etc. All of these things degrade the quality of both individual and public health (do you want people with infectious diseases walking around untreated?).

Re:Unbelievable (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46197001)

I'm concerned that the costs of this system would outweigh the benefits. If you can convince me that, even with the corruption that plagues the UK government, this would be a long-term net-gain to society (and remain that way), then you'd have my support with the obvious clarification that a citizen has to opt-in to having this data available for such mining.

Re:Unbelievable (2)

the monolith (1174927) | about 9 months ago | (#46197619)

I would have expected someone to raise the possibility of insurance companies mining the information so as to avoid dealing with 'problem' medically compromised customers, or at least increasing the coverage fees to unacceptable levels and thereby driving off the 'problem'. Perhaps that potential new employer wants to know that you aren't medical damaged goods? Perhaps you have to apply to the police or a local authority for permission for something, and they want to use the medical records to check your suitability/mental condition/drink/drugs etc..

I would have expected someone to be making comparisons to 'Gattaca' by this point in time.

Re:Unbelievable (4, Interesting)

Teun (17872) | about 9 months ago | (#46196433)

I'm wasting some mod points replying on your writings because you are very wrong.

Private data, and can it get more private than medical information? is per EU law yours and will always stay yours.
This is not the USofA where a corp can legally sell your stuff, not even in the case of bankruptcy.

Now even EU law has some exceptions to this rule and law enforcement is one of them but it would still require judicial (court) oversight, no blanket trawling.

Rather cynical is this idea is promoted by the same Cameron government that complains the Brussels's 'meddling' in it's internal affairs is wrong and needs to be stopped!

Re:Unbelievable (1)

Teun (17872) | about 9 months ago | (#46196877)

Oh yes, and then there is this little thing called the Hippocratic Oath [wikipedia.org] , it is a scary thought that only 50% of British physicians actually swear it compared to 98% in the USofA and other developed nations.

Though this oath does not carry legal weight many Dutch doctors refused to corporate with a similar computer database exactly because they feared their oath would be breached if they did.

Re:Unbelievable (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46198417)

The reason that doctors in the UK don't all swear the Hippocratic Oath is because there are other oaths, so it depends on which medical school you went to. My wife, for instance, swore the 'Bristol Oath'. Same basic shit, different name.

Re:Unbelievable (3, Informative)

ColdWetDog (752185) | about 9 months ago | (#46198843)

Although the Hippocratic Oath does entreat physicians to keep patient information secret, it also asks the practitioner to pray to some fairly obscure deities (and I would point out that His Noodliness is not among them), prohibits assisted suicide and abortion (at least with a pessary) and to keep one's daughters in the dark. So it's a bit of a wash in the 21st Century.

But it does point out that, once you put something into a computer database, it's pretty easy to get it out.

We should go back to stone tablets.

Re:Unbelievable (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46195851)

Okay... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46194637)

In what possible scenario would the police need health records?

Re:Okay... (2)

sliceoflife (2814511) | about 9 months ago | (#46194667)

Well, for instanceMaybe if Slashdot were based based in UK, they would be able to see the mental health problems of management, and arrest them under trumped up cahrges before they destroy swathes of actual meaningful communities. Please consider stopping sensible responses to Slashdot articles. Otherwise in a few weeks slashdot will drown under likes and selfies. Your post today kills tomorrow. Think, react, the only good post right now, if you like slashdot is of course, Fuck Beta.

Re:Okay... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46194685)

"Your post today kills tomorrow" - AMEN

Re:Okay... (1)

sliceoflife (2814511) | about 9 months ago | (#46194687)

Please excuse all the typos there. Something funny gone on with commenting, but still my fault. BETA spoils everything

Re:Okay... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46195771)

Re:Okay... (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46194699)

Well, for example it can be part of the standard background check of some officer's daughter new boyfriend. Or it can expand the possibilities when trying to get rid of some annoying neighbor.
Imagine finding out that your son's teacher has followed some opioid replacement therapy!

All in all, it will make the lives of the wonderful people working in the police easier by giving them more material to exploit against an hostile world populated by devious people.

Re:Okay... (1)

sliceoflife (2814511) | about 9 months ago | (#46194721)

Slashdot is run by the devious. Why are so many of the "on TOpiC" replies by AC's...I wonder if.... oh just FUck Beta

Re:Okay... (2)

mrbester (200927) | about 9 months ago | (#46194765)

It's not only the police, but also a nebulous group of "government bodies" which can easily be added to like councils, the Forestry Commission, quango charities and anybody else who has absolutely no reason or justification to see confidential medical records apart from that they want to.

Re:Okay... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46194813)

You are aware there is some other "bodies" perhaps "nebulous" who are also happy to make changes with no reason or justification, apart from that they want to.

FUCK BETA.

captcha: coronary!

Re:Okay... (2, Funny)

sliceoflife (2814511) | about 9 months ago | (#46194831)

You are aware there is some other "bodies" perhaps "nebulous" who are also happy to make changes with no reason or justification, apart from that they want to.

FUCK BETA.

captcha: coronary!

They'll be able to discover all the people on BETA BLOCKERS!

Re:Okay... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46194855)

You really like to chant against beta, now don't you, sliceoflife?

Re:Okay... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46194739)

Hypothetically, they could check the health records of celebrities then sell the info to tabloids. Because of these perks, the government would not need to increase policemen salaries thus allowing it to hire more policemen thus increasing security.

Re:Okay... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46196421)

Hypothetically, they could check the health records of celebrities then sell the info to tabloids. Because of these perks, the government would not need to increase policemen salaries thus allowing it to hire more policemen thus increasing security.

Hypothetically, you'd think that.
Celebs etc ISTR were 'exempt' from a lot of this (thanks to a wee bit of lobbying by vested interests when they were shuffling the relevant law through the houses of duffers..)
Besides, celebs use the NHS? ( Mostly Private healthcare )

Oh, FWIW, Plod access to these databases is now allegedly audited, thanks to the NoTW (and other) scandals, and suspicious accesses allegedly automatically flagged up.

two common scenarios (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46194861)

They need it (1) to screen the population for medical treatments related to crimes, (2) obtain damaging or embarrassing information that they can use to blackmail you into confessing to a crime they are convinced you have committed but don't have enough evidence to convict you on.

Challenge accepted. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46194879)

Here's a simple one. Let's say they want to start cracking down on drug dealers. They get the records and current address of everyone who was admitted for a possible OD in the last year. Heck, everyone who admitted to a doctor in the course of treatment they took drugs.

On the strength of this, they obtain search warrants for these peoples homes (a "reasonable suspicion" that drugs are present). Mass raids, at least some of which come up with drugs. Lean on these people - tell us who your dealer is and agree to testify or go to jail.

P.S. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46194895)

Fuck Beta.

Sorry, left that off parent.

Re:Challenge accepted. (1)

penix1 (722987) | about 9 months ago | (#46195149)

A more plausible scenario is to see who has mental health issues and put a special eye on them in case they show signs of turning violent or suicidal. In either case it will be put down to "targeting terrorists!"

Re:Okay... (1)

Rich0 (548339) | about 9 months ago | (#46194949)

In what possible scenario would the police need health records?

Since nobody has suggested it, here is the hypothetical somewhat-legitimate use of this access (though I do not think it should be allowed all the same).

Health records can be potentially useful in identifying suspects. Suppose a witness notices a distinctive scar on a suspect. A consulting doctor could decide that the scar is likely the result of a particular surgical procedure and a query of the NHS records might provide a fairly short list of everybody who had this procedure performed. Additional data could be used to filter the list (geographic location, height, gender, hair color, etc). If you get it down to just a few individuals you can check alibis, collect DNA, and so on and end up with a very likely suspect.

Another "legitimate" use would be identifying individuals with narcotic prescribing patterns that seems suspicious.

I'm sure it would be abused fairly often (I'm defining abuse as use for a purpose other than detecting somebody violating laws that are on the books). However, I really consider this beside the point. I'm not really a fan of use of medical data for the detection of crime in general. I'd be fine for using it to identify victims, as doing so helps their families and perhaps helps them to seek justice, which is an indirect benefit to the individual whose data is accessed (and if the victim is alive but unable to identify themselves it could even provide direct medical benefit to them).

I think the key is that if you're going to use individual medical data without consent you need to do so in a way that ensures that it only works out for their genuine benefit, or is at least neutral to every individual and provides a general public benefit. The problem is that where crime is concerned the data is going to be used in a way that is not in the interest of whoever is going to get charged with the crime (whether they are innocent or not).

Re:Okay... (1)

Teun (17872) | about 9 months ago | (#46196741)

Exactly, there are plausible arguments to open such databases but even then, medical secrecy is in the Western World the way we used to know it before 9/11 a rather absolute thing and needs serious oversight before it is allowed to be breached, if ever.

One of the reasons is early legislatures recognised people would feel uncertain if they could be fair and open with their doctor unless such secrecy was guaranteed.

Re:Okay... (1)

ATMAvatar (648864) | about 9 months ago | (#46197511)

Now there's no uncertainty. In the UK, you can't be fair and open with your doctor. By doing so, you are also being open with any government agent who decides to take an interest, even if only for personal and nefarious reasons.

Re:Okay... (1)

allo (1728082) | about 9 months ago | (#46195137)

Its easier to kill someone, if you know he's got diabetes.

fuck beta (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46194691)

^^^^^^^

Re:fuck beta (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46194929)

yea BABY fuck beta!!!

Your complaints against Beta will not be heard. (0)

emmagsachs (1024119) | about 9 months ago | (#46194703)

To their advertisers, Dice presents Slashdot as "Social Media for B2B Technology" [slashdotmedia.com] platform. They ignore the detailed feedback of Beta that they have received in these past months, and they disregard our grievances. They pretend to listen, all while admitting that Classic will be cancelled soon [slashdot.org] :

"Most importantly, we want you to know that Classic Slashdot isn't going away until we're confident that the new site is ready.

What company directs 25% of its users to a partially-working, not-ready-for-production website? A company like Apple can get away with using its customers to test out beta versions, because many of its early adopters are fanboys and suckers. This is how Dice views its userbase.

Beta delenda est!

Re:Your complaints against Beta will not be heard. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46194807)

So I think it's safe to say that the community should consider a new home. Right now altslashdot.org is doing its best to restore slashdot from the past. Remember when slashdot was good? DICE ran slashdot into the ground so please support the new one! Name is tentative don't worry :)

Re:Your complaints against Beta will not be heard. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46195191)

emmagsachs has hit the nail on the head....
SLASHDOT AS YOU KNEW IT IS FINISHED.....IT IS OVER.....One look at that slashdotmedia.com page will confirm that for you.
If you really love the classic site layout so much then fork the site code and start another site such as what "AltSlashdot" are attempting to do. Personally speaking, I think it may be a good idea if Joel Spolsky (co-founder of StackOverflow) got involved.

Re:Your complaints against Beta will not be heard. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46195323)

I hadn't seen that B2B link until just now... you need to get that word out there. I think that speaks volumes as to Dice management's intentions.

Re:Your complaints against Beta will not be heard. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46195967)

The police say the purpose of gathering all this (2)

oscrivellodds (1124383) | about 9 months ago | (#46194707)

information is to prevent bad things from happening. So what happens when a bad thing happens and the police fail to prevent it, even though they have information that clearly indicates something bad is about to happen? I wonder if civil lawsuits against the police (and awards to plaintiffs) will increase.

Re:The police say the purpose of gathering all thi (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46194749)

May I ask why you are posting in response to "timothy", and not part of the FUck Beta activism to save Slashdot?

Re:The police say the purpose of gathering all thi (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about 9 months ago | (#46196167)

May I answer that it could be because the FUck Beta activism to save Slashdot has totally annoyed many of us and we do not care any more just like all the Ron Paultards turned what initially appeared to be an interesting candidate into a name you wanted to avoid like the plague every damned chance you could get.

Re:The police say the purpose of gathering all thi (1)

Rich0 (548339) | about 9 months ago | (#46194965)

information is to prevent bad things from happening. So what happens when a bad thing happens and the police fail to prevent it, even though they have information that clearly indicates something bad is about to happen? I wonder if civil lawsuits against the police (and awards to plaintiffs) will increase.

Yeah, good luck with that. At least in the US I don't think the police actually have any legal "duty" to stop any particular crime (in the legal liability sense of the word). If you get mugged because the cops are busy tasering some old geezer who didn't show proper respect that's too bad for you.

With apologies to Malcolm (1)

emmagsachs (1024119) | about 9 months ago | (#46194709)

Mr. Moderator, brothers and sisters, friends and enemies: I just can’t believe everyone in here is a friend, and I don’t want to leave anybody out. The question tonight, as I understand it, is “The Slashdot Revolt, and Where Do We Go From Here?” or "What Next?” In my little humble way of understanding it, it points toward either the pitchfork or the codefork.

Although I’m still a Slashdotter, I’m not here tonight to improve my karma. I’m not here to try and change your karma. I’m not here to argue or discuss anything that we differ about, because it’s time for us to submerge our differences and realize that it is best for us to first see that we have the same problem, a common problem, a problem that will make you catch hell whether you’re a Troll, or a Shill, or a First Time Submitter or a Karma Whore. Whether you’re educated or illiterate, whether you live on the boulevard or in the alley, you’re going to catch hell just like I am. We’re all in the same boat and we all are going to catch the same hell from the same man. He just happens to be a work at Dice.

Now in speaking like this, it doesn’t mean that we’re anti-Dice, but it does mean we’re anti-Beta, we’re anti-SlashBI, we’re anti-Slashcloud. And if Dice doesn’t want us to be anti-it, let it stop forcing Beta on us. Whether we are Trolls or Shills or Karma Whores, we must first learn to forget our differences. If we have differences, let us differ in the closet; when we come out in front, let us not have anything to argue about until we get finished arguing with Dice. If the late President Kennedy could get together with Portman and exchange some grits, we certainly have more in common with each other than Kennedy and Portman had with each other.

If we don’t do something real soon, I think you’ll have to agree that we’re going to be forced either to use the pitchfork or the codefork. It’s one or the other in 2014. It isn’t that time is running out — time has run out!

(And a thank you to arth1 [slashdot.org] )

Slashdot: News for nerds, Betas for bros! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46194757)

Slashdot is the new Myspace!

Re: Slashdot: News for nerds, Betas for bros! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46194979)

you take that back you beta loving bastard

dna (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46194771)

In the future, your DNA will be part of your health record. Treasure trove for forensic science looking for hits with the DNA found at a crime site.

Oh no (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46194787)

You know what this means? Do you realise?

FORK /.

Not with a bang, but with a Beta. (2, Insightful)

emmagsachs (1024119) | about 9 months ago | (#46194805)

Beta is more than cosmetics or aesthetics. The new design ruins the one thing that makes /. what it is -- the commenting system. I only come here for the comments [slashdot.org] , not the 2-day old articles nor the erroneous summaries.

I do not see the changes of Beta as improvements. What is wrong with Slashdot that demands breaking its foundations? This is not change for the sake of change, but, as others have commented, an attempt to monetize /. at any any cost [slashdot.org] , and its users be damned.

Our complaints have fallen on deaf ears, and will continue to do so. Dice intends to dispose of Classic in favor of Beta [slashdot.org] , whether we like it or not. Do you know how to tell whether an executive really cares about feedback? If her CV [linkedin.com] doesn't already proclaim these changes to be a success even before fully implementing them:

Proven track record innovating and improving iconic websites (CNET.com, Dice.com, Slashdot.org, Sourceforge.net) while protecting their voice and brand integrity

Correct me if I'm wrong, but apart from an almost universally hated Beta version, how can anyone claim in good faith that /. has undergone any change at all so far?

Re:Not with a bang, but with a Beta. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46195733)

Re:Not with a bang, but with a Beta. (1)

DaTrueDave (992134) | about 9 months ago | (#46195887)

Proven track record innovating and improving iconic websites (CNET.com, Dice.com, Slashdot.org, Sourceforge.net) while protecting their voice and brand integrity

Not to mention CNET.com has been pretty much ruined. It's nothing but adware loaded crap now. Has SourceForge been messed with yet?

Re:Not with a bang, but with a Beta. (1)

richlv (778496) | about 9 months ago | (#46196141)

i got "beta" on my phone today while not logged in. i did not know whether i would visit /. in the future if they continue with beta. i do now.

fuck beta.

Neither here nor there... (2)

Electricity Likes Me (1098643) | about 9 months ago | (#46194839)

This is hardly "backdoor". There's a central body, the police can obtain a warrant and then request information from it.

Doctor-patient confidentiality is a practice with regards to disclosure by doctors. In a practical sense your information is disclosed widely with the government and your insurance company - i.e. Medicare would know for what items I went to the optometrist recently, as would any private insurer I had, because they need to pay for the various line-item billings.

It's not a meaningful change from standard practice - medical practitioners can already be compelled by the same warrant's to share patient files.

Re:Neither here nor there... (2)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 9 months ago | (#46194859)

This is hardly "backdoor". There's a central body, the police can obtain a warrant and then request information from it.

The article asserts that they will be able to get information without warrants, though no mechanism for this has been suggested. Are you saying that the article is incorrect?

Re:Neither here nor there... (1)

Electricity Likes Me (1098643) | about 9 months ago | (#46195099)

This is hardly "backdoor". There's a central body, the police can obtain a warrant and then request information from it.

The article asserts that they will be able to get information without warrants, though no mechanism for this has been suggested. Are you saying that the article is incorrect?

You're right not a warrant, but also not direct access - there's an intermediary. So the pressing issue is probably to have the law changed to still require a warrant, but provide quicker turn-around when one is granted.

Re:Neither here nor there... (2)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 9 months ago | (#46195285)

You're right not a warrant, but also not direct access - there's an intermediary.

The point of requiring a warrant is that you can't trust an intermediary. There's really no justification for complaining about using the language "back door". In the USA, we'd perhaps prefer "end run" [around] the law.

actually, it's pretty much "there" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46194881)

In fee-for-service medical care, the entire transaction occurs between my provider and me; no third party knows about it. If I pay cash, it can be anonymous.

With insurance, it ceases to be anonymous and there is an obvious paper trail. But there still is no single central record, the government needs to get a warrant, and needs to figure out who to serve.

With single payer or government plans or universal coverage, the government gets push-button access to everybody's medical conditions. Whether it theoretically needs a warrant becomes immaterial because in practice it doesn't.

Contrary to what you are saying, this is a big change compared to the way medical care worked originally, and to the way it worked under a private insurance system. Privacy is being eroded in a big way, step by step.

Re:actually, it's pretty much "there" (1)

Electricity Likes Me (1098643) | about 9 months ago | (#46195093)

This is the NHS in Britain aka single-payer healthcare from the government.

stating the obvious? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46195155)

Yes? You're stating the obvious... why?

Re:stating the obvious? (1, Flamebait)

Daniel Dvorkin (106857) | about 9 months ago | (#46195311)

The point is that the NHS has existed for decades, but this "push-button access to everybody's medical conditions" is new. It's not inherently a single-payer problem; it's a government-not-respecting-people's-rights problem.

Re:actually, it's pretty much "there" (1)

Antique Geekmeister (740220) | about 9 months ago | (#46195371)

In the US, the separation of different doctor office and health insurance systems helps isolate the data from centralized universal access. Continuing to protect and isolate patient data is large concern for doctors who treat terminal cancer, mental health patients, STD's, or pregnancy in juveniles. It's led to some fascinating conflicts between HIPAA, which is supposed to ease sharing and reliability of medical records in the age of digital records, and doctor/patient confidentiality practices that may be in favor of patient confidentiality than HIPAA allows.

HIPAA also has guidelines to _protect_ patient data, but make no mistake about its results. It's being used to make patient data more consistently and easily accessible among all interested personnel, and its protections against government snooping are effectively non-existent.

Re:Neither here nor there... (2)

AmiMoJo (196126) | about 9 months ago | (#46195985)

This story is saying that the police don't need a warrant. That is the backdoor. Sure, they could get your records with a court order before, but now they can just get them any time they feel like it. In the UK the doctor-patient relationship is protected and normally only a court can override it in specific circumstances.

My insurance companies certainly do not know about my eyesight or medical conditions unless I choose to tell them. We have a national health system paid for by taxes anyway, but even if you do have private insurance they don't automatically get access to your medical records. For example I had some private dentistry work done and they had no access to my records, I had to tell them everything relevant.

On the assumption that they won't abandon Beta... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46194843)

Should the community be considering where and how to "fork" slashdot using a (fixed) old slashdot codebase?

Heh - well there's your problem.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46194849)

Heh - well there's your problem.... "Audience" You guys really don't get it. With merely an "Audience" you wouldn't have a product!

When this "Audience", which obviously just sits on its collective ass and NEVER contributes content ( without you paying them a wage in return ) gets up and leaves your sorry ass BECAUSE YOU REFUSED TO LISTEN TO THEM AND THEN ACT ON THEIR OBSERVATIONS who in the hell is going to generate this site's content?!?!?!

Dice & /. You guys are going to be sooo screwed.

Hmmm all most forgot *** FUCK BETA *** FUCK BETA over easy with butter F U C K B E T A

NHS (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46194877)

At least it's still "free."

Back to the telly boys and girls. Daddy government knows best.

Backdoor access? (1)

nurb432 (527695) | about 9 months ago | (#46194889)

Sounds pretty front door to me. Poor terminology understanding by the non-technical, or intentionally making it sound more scary.

People will end up not going to the doctor, or an underground medical system will arise.

Re:Backdoor access? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46194901)

underground medical system will arise

No. They'd have to pay for that... and that's just immoral and stuff.

One way to reduce health care costs (1)

zotz (3951) | about 9 months ago | (#46194903)

That is one way to reduce health care costs I guess.

drew

Delay between Timothy's posts suspicious! (1)

sliceoflife (2814511) | about 9 months ago | (#46194909)

Not unlike Soulskill yesterday, Timothy's "articles" are following an odd pattern. All articles are approx 3.50 hrs apart. Every one. Are they just automated? Or does "someone" have a specific schedule, of article, fake posts, shills, deletes, mod-downs, coffee, breathe, pray, check its not all a nasty dream.... Rise and repeat.

Re:Delay between Timothy's posts suspicious! (1)

sliceoflife (2814511) | about 9 months ago | (#46195003)

rinse!

Don't trust UK police (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46194917)

A long string of them abusing privacy, selling records, brutality and common abuse like this http://21stcenturywire.com/201... [21stcenturywire.com]

There is a way to defeat this. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46194931)

There is one very simple way to guarantee your personal medical history remains private and 100% hacker-proof.

Don't have one.

Of course, that involves eating healthy, exercising on a daily basis, drinking plenty of water, and abstaining from things like alcohol and tobacco completely to avoid creating a medical history in the first place.

Of course the problem there is there is no point in talking about it that method. The obesity rate sends the message loud and clear. No one wants to do that shit. It's as preposterous as the concept of everyone driving the speed limit to avoid $250 speeding tickets and increased insurance rates.

Logic tries to win against man. Man says fuck that shit.

Abstinence can work. I promise you it can. Just take a look at the Beta for example...I did. And am proud to say I'm 100% Beta-free and healthy. For now. Let's hope a new plague doesn't befall us.

Re:There is a way to defeat this. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46194959)

BETA abstinence is good for all of us.

FUCK BETA

Hrmph (5, Interesting)

sociocapitalist (2471722) | about 9 months ago | (#46194955)

It's a good thing we won world war 2 isn't it.

At least we've had sixty years of freedom.

UK Police Will Have beta Access To Health Reco (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46194987)

If you look at the article it actually talks about beta in the UK, they basically saying, we want beta and we don't care what you say, we will force the beta utilizing any force with or without UK police. Fuck beta!

Would appear to violate EU privacy law (2)

maynard (3337) | about 9 months ago | (#46195013)

The UK doesn't seem to give a toss about its obligations as an EU member, but giving complete police access to medical records without court order appears to violate EU privacy guidelines. Never mind all reasonable expectations of privacy. Here's a telegraph article which suggests that the NHS policy violates EU guidelines and could lead to a ban. That the UK would likely ignore.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/hea... [telegraph.co.uk]

Honestly, there are places where national health care systems really do work. But man does the USA/UK alliance do their best to confirm every libertarian paranoid fear about rogue government abusing private data in publicly held records. What a mess.

Ever Had a STD? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46195017)

Well no you haven't because you are here on /. But lets just say you are one of the lucky ones who are just passing through and have had a STD and have gone to the doctor to get the fix. So now some conservative government decides for the betterment of civilization that everybody who has ever been treated for a STD gets rounded up and put into education camps and forced to use beta until they see that it's better than the alternative.

better than Branson (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46195073)

I would rather the police have access than Richard Bransons "Virgin Healthcare" who have infiltrated the NHS with his parasitic ideas, right now a commercial for-profit offshore based company can have as much access to your health records as they desire.

A modest invasion of privacy (1)

TheloniousToady (3343045) | about 9 months ago | (#46195125)

There once was a geezer from Kent
Who reeked of an unpleasant scent
With records of rectum
The cops could inspect 'im
His backdoor, they learned, was the vent

UK is not HIPAA compliant. US is. (2)

ihtpsswrds (647476) | about 9 months ago | (#46195185)

The United Kingdom has not adopted a HIPAA "like" policy that protects patient privacy and, as a matter of fact, the UK does not feel the same need for privacy and other human rights that the US embraces (we had a war over this, remember?). Remember the prank call where the radio show host posing as the Queen called the hospital for info on the pregnant Kate, wife of prince William? That ended with a suicide and some firings. In the US, that would have ended, at worse, with the firing of the person that divulged the info. More than likely, the "queen" would have been informed she needed to prove her identity and ask Kate to be added to the disclosure list signed by Kate. And while we're on the subject, your private (or public) insurance provider has TONS of information on you (diagnosis, meds, treatments). Be aware of when you assign rights for others to see your Protected Health Information (PHI). If someone gets your info in the US without permission, warrant, or, in an emergent setting, REPORT THEM! (and then sue). Sorry, we have a great system here in the US, but we all need to make it work and quit complaining.

Re:UK is not HIPAA compliant. US is. (1)

magpie (3270) | about 9 months ago | (#46196829)

Which NHS? The rules for NHS Scotland I believe are different, different legal system and all (there is no such thing as a UK wide NHS).

+1 from me. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46195403)

There should be an end to ILLEGAL immigrants too!

Think of the possibilities (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46195811)

Think of all the people who have admitted doing drugs sometime in their life.
Catching! Now you have probable cause and can get a warrant and search the house.

We can keep an eye on everybody with mental problems, that won't keep anybody from getting help.
Saving money by making people not want to get help, catching dangerous drug addicts and getting a DNA base for everybody.

Sounds like a win - win to me.

fucking beta (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46196131)

So fed up with loading an article out of my rss and having the fucking beta version of slashdot load up. What a pile of hideous crap.

So glad there is no UK wide NHS (1)

magpie (3270) | about 9 months ago | (#46196811)

Only applies to NHS England as there is no UK NHS, and never has been, for those confused (mostly in better together), the Scottish NHS is septate and always has been :-D. Thank god(dess) for our septate legal system. Out of interest does this mean all the UK police forces can have a nose about NHS England’s records?

Coming soon (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46197787)

To a HealthCare.gov medical data repository near you.

It's not private data if you tell anyone else (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46199411)

In the USA the DoJ said, I believe, that if you tell your pharmacist something it's not private anymore. Their point was you voluntarily gave that information to someone who wasn't you.

So, just don't tell your doctor anything, and don't give any prescriptions he might then write to anyone else (such as the pharmacist who you would need to fulfill it, by law), and your information will remain private!

Many people will be like me. (1)

Ralph Ostrander (2846785) | about 9 months ago | (#46199699)

I dont go to the doctor anymore, not worth the price hospital bill. I have several things that might one day kill me but that is just my luck. I die when I die. It is now a police state/world I don't really care if I stay or if I go. I think joining the army might have cause this instead of stopping it. I am sorry world.
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