Jeremy Hunt accused of ‘sleeping at the wheel’ during NHS data loss scandal : Guardian.

Health secretary forced to respond to urgent Commons question after withering NAO report on loss of 700,000 health documents

Jeremy Hunt, the health secretary.
Jeremy Hunt, the health secretary admitted that his department’s oversight of NHS Shared Business Services was not good enough. Photograph: Stefan Wermuth/Reuters

Jeremy Hunt has been accused of being “asleep at the wheel” while a private firm co-owned by the Department of Health built up a backlog of over 700,000 pieces of medical correspondence it never delivered to GPs.

The health secretary was summoned to the House of Commons to answer questions from MPs after a damning National Audit Office report found that the scandal may have harmed the health of at least 1,788 patients and had so far cost £6.6m.

Hunt said it was “totally unacceptable” and “incompetent” that NHS Shared Business Services (SBS) mislaid almost 709,000 separate items of paperwork over five years, including the results of cervical cancer tests, details of changes to patient medication, and child protection notes.

SBS, a joint venture between the DH and the private company Sopra Steria, aims to make £1bn of NHS savings by 2020 by streamlining back office and support services.

Hunt, who sits on the board of the company, told MPs in answering the first urgent question of the new parliament that SBS should never have allowed the huge backlog to build up.

Read More : The Guardian.



  1. He has got to be the most incompetent health secretary ever. He has only been chosen because he is willing to force through the privatisation of the NHS.


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