Babylon Health accidentally sends ICP erectile dysfunction patient details
By Neil Trainis
The online NHS GP practice Babylon GP at Hand has mistakenly forwarded a letter containing a patient’s personal details including a treatment they were prescribed for erectile dysfunction to Independent Community Pharmacist magazine.
The letter, which was accidentally delivered to ICP’s office, was intended for the online pharmacy The Independent Pharmacy. It contains the patient’s name, address, date of birth and the treatment they were prescribed for their erectile dysfunction.
The letter was originally sent by The Independent Pharmacy to Babylon GP at Hand telling them the patient had completed a consultation and been prescribed the treatment and advised Babylon to update the individual’s medical records.
Babylon GP meant to send the letter back to The Independent Pharmacy with a note asking the pharmacy to forward the letter to the patient’s GP because they were no longer registered at its practice.
However, it appears Babylon GP at Hand mixed up The Independent Pharmacy with Independent Community Pharmacist.
When ICP contacted Babylon GP at Hand, which is registered with the Care Quality Commission, to ask how it could have made the error, it did not respond. ICP has contacted CQC and the Information Commissioner's Office.
On its website, Babylon at Hand reassures patients their data “is safe with us” and said: “We take data security very seriously. Personal data is kept confidential and secure at all times. It is always handled with the utmost care and respect.”
In June 2020, Babylon Health, which runs GP at Hand, suffered a data breach that allowed users of its GP video consultation app to see other patients’ appointments. Babylon said the issue, which it insisted was a “software error rather than a malicious attack,” was “identified and resolved quickly.”
GP at Hand is free for patients who register with it as their NHS GP practice. It allows patients to book video appointments with a healthcare professional, including GPs, physiotherapists, prescribing pharmacists and advanced nurse practitioners.