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US information analytics group Palantir has secured an NHS England contract price £330mn to develop a brand new affected person information platform, the well being service introduced on Tuesday.
NHS England stated the brand new software program, known as the Federated Data Platform, would make it “easier for staff to access key information to provide improved and more timely patient care” by bringing collectively present affected person information units. It added that the platform can be rolled out subsequent 12 months.
Led by chief govt Alex Karp and co-founded by Peter Thiel, the tech investor and outstanding backer of Donald Trump, Palantir turned the go-to information analytics supplier for the NHS through the pandemic.
Accenture, PwC, NECS and Carnall Farrar will all help Palantir, NHS England stated on Tuesday. “No company involved in the Federated Data Platform can access health and care data without the explicit permission of the NHS,” it added.
NHS England stated the deal can be price “up to £330mn” over seven years.
Palantir is finest identified for its ties to the safety, defence and intelligence sectors. In latest months NHS workers and medical commerce unions have voiced considerations about its suitability to run nationwide well being methods, in addition to the risks of the service counting on a single personal firm for key features.
Health secretary Victoria Atkins stated the platform “will sit across NHS trusts and integrated care systems, allowing them to connect data they already hold, such as health records, waiting lists, and theatre and staff rosters, in a safe and secure environment, to better manage patient care”.
She added: “The FDP will support key priorities of the NHS, including recovery of elective care and the improvement of discharge processes to get medically fit patients treated and home quicker.”
NHS England stated the software program would allow workers to “plan and maximise resources such as operating theatre and outpatient clinic time to ensure patients receive more timely care”.
In response to the considerations about personal sector corporations’ entry to NHS information, Atkins insisted that “data will not leave the UK”.
The phrases of the contract forbid using affected person information for industrial acquire, however human rights group Amnesty International stated the deal had “huge implications for data protection”, including that Palantir ought to give “cast-iron guarantees” that it’s going to not monetise well being information.
“The public who rely on the NHS need to have confidence that their informed consent will be obtained at all stages of data-gathering,” stated Peter Frankental, Amnesty International UK’s enterprise and human rights director, “and assurance that their personal information won’t be harvested by Palantir for purposes that have little to do with their health”.
Former minister David Davis, who has been outspoken in opposition to the contract being awarded to Palantir, stated: “The NHS does not understand how sensitive, delicate and dangerous public health data is.
“You can’t anonymise medical data . . . it’s too rich, you just can’t do it,” he added.
Responding to the announcement, Palantir’s Karp stated: “This award is the culmination of 20 years of developing software that enables complex, sensitive data to be integrated in a way that protects security, respects privacy and puts the customer in full control.
“There is no more important institution in the UK than the NHS and we are humbled to have now been chosen to provide that software across England to help bring down waiting lists, improve patient care and reduce health inequalities,” he added.
Vin Diwakar, NHS England’s nationwide medical director for secondary care, stated: “Better use of data is essential for the NHS to tackle waiting times, join up patient care and make the health service sustainable for the future.”
Additional reporting by Anna Gross in London