Israel’s ‘single patient record’ system could revolutionise NHS
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Israel’s ‘single patient record’ system could revolutionise NHS

Nuffield Trust CEO says the way the Jewish state uses patient data could help transform the UK's national health service

Inside an NHS hospital
Inside an NHS hospital

The way Israel amalgamates and uses patient records could revolutionise the functioning of the NHS, the chief executive of the Nuffield Trust has said.

Speaking to The Guardian, Nigel Edwards praised Israel’s “single patient record” system and said it could be adopted in the UK after a series of security breaches led to the cancellation of the government’s huge planned medical database.

The head of the influential think-tank said the Israeli system means “your health practitioner knows exactly what is happening to you, what your needs are… They get reminders it’s time for you to have various preventative care, they have alerts about drugs which might interact negatively with each other.”

On one level, medical data sharing can mean sharing records with healthcare practitioners, but on another it can mean sharing results on a much larger, leading to improvements in care and research. This can lead to models which show who is more at risk of developing conditions and preventing them.

“With the restrictions we place on data sharing, there’s a big risk we are going to miss out on the benefits,” said Edwards. “If we use data and information in better ways than we have done historically it would massively improve the efficiency of hospitals.”

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