Opt out of medical data sharing now

 Patients need to make decision over new GP data-sharing plan

Hundreds of thousands of GP patients across the county have just over two months to choose whether to opt out of a controversial data-sharing system after its launch date was delayed.

A new scheme which would allow an NHS system to extract patient data from GP surgeries in England was due to start in July, but has been pushed back to September amid concerns around privacy.

NHS Digital figures show there were 513,876 patients on GP registers in Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin as of June 1.

They will now have until August 31 to opt out of sharing their personal information.

The programme, GP Data for Planning and Research, would put the medical histories of 61 million patients across England into a new database.

The launch was delayed to September 1 following complaints from privacy campaigners and doctors that people did not have enough time to understand what was happening.

The scheme will collect information on people’s treatments, referrals and appointments over the past 10 years, alongside other data from medical records held on GPs’ systems.