Royal Free NHS Trust & Google DeepMind

The request was successful.

Dear Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust,

I would like to make a request under the FOI Act.

For the purposes of the Act, please take the date of your receipt of this request as Tuesday 3rd May 2016.

I note with interest two articles in the press this week:

https://www.newscientist.com/article/208...
http://www.theinquirer.net/inquirer/news...

Both of these refer to a data sharing agreement between Google-owned artificial intelligence company DeepMind and the Royal Free NHS Trust, and which gives DeepMind access to a wide range of healthcare data on the 1.6 million patients who pass through three London hospitals run by the Royal Free NHS Trust – Barnet, Chase Farm and the Royal Free – each year, as well as access to patient data from the last five years (via SUS).

The Royal Free Hospital will remain the official data controller in this instance.

I would be very grateful for the following information relating to this agreement.

• Please could you provide me with a copy of this data-sharing agreement between the Royal Free NHS Trust and DeepMind (I assume suitably redacted to remove commercially sensitive items such as £). I am particularly interested in the information governance arrangements detailed within that document

• Please could you provide me with all communication that the Royal Free NHS Trust has had with the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) regarding this agreement, which may include, for example, advice about the legality of such an arrangement, requirements for fair processing information, and the rights and processes by which patients of those hospital can object to the processing of their personal confidential data by DeepMind, for both primary and secondary purposes

• Please could you kindly provide me with the fair processing information that you make available to patients, attending all those hospitals, regarding this new use of their personal confidential data (for example, poster, handouts, leaflets)

• Please could you provide me with the process (including any requisite forms that must be completed) by which patients can *completely* object to the passing of their personal confidential data to DeepMind for processing, for *both* primary and secondary uses. Such an objection would, of course, not prohibit medical staff within the hospitals from accessing the trusts' electronic hospital record for their direct medical care

• Please could you provide me with the process (including any requisite forms that must be completed) by which patients can object to the passing of their personal confidential data to DeepMind for processing for secondary uses *only* (that is, for purposes other than their direct medical care), including the pseudonymisation of personal confidential data for that reason. Such an objection would, of course, not prohibit medical staff within the hospitals from accessing their electronic hospital record for their direct medical care

The articles state that DeepMind will have access to the NHS' centralised record of all hospital treatments in the UK, dubbed the Secondary User Service (SUS) database.

At a patient's request, hospital trusts are required to remove all patient identifiable data (NHS number or name/address, local patient identifier (hospital number), DOB, postcode) from any SUS submission (CDS file) and render it anonymised and not pseudonymised. Guidance on such a process is available from the HSCIC :
http://www.hscic.gov.uk/media/9719/Schem...

Some hospital trusts produce straightforward SUS opt-out forms for patients to use, such as this one from Plymouth Hospitals
http://www.plymouthhospitals.nhs.uk/down...

• Please can you provide me with the opt-out form that patients of the Royal Free NHS Trust can use to request such anonymisation of their SUS data submissions

Patients might not be aware of the processing of their data by DeepMind in this way. When they do find out, and if there are unhappy about such an arrangement, they might wish to ensure that any such data about them that has been uploaded or passed to DeepMind is deleted completely.

• Please could you provide me with the process (including any requisite forms that must be completed) by which patients can request that any personal confidential data about them uploaded or passed to DeepMind is completely deleted, and that no further information is passed to DeepMind for either primary or secondary purposes. Such an objection would, of course, not prohibit medical staff within the hospitals from accessing their electronic hospital record for their direct medical care

As per Section 1(4) of the FOI Act
( http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2000... ) I would like the information in question held at the time when my request is received (draft or otherwise), except that account may be taken of any amendment or deletion made between now and the latest time by which the information is to be communicated to me, being an amendment or deletion that would have been made regardless of the receipt of my request.

I would be grateful if you would be kind enough to send me the requested information promptly and in any event not later than the twentieth working day following the date of receipt of my request, which I make to be the 1st June.

If my request is denied in whole or in part, or specific items within the responses are withheld from disclosure, then you must justify all deletions by reference to specific exemptions of the act, as per Section 17 of the Act
( http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2000... ). Where you rely on a qualified exemption to withhold disclosure, you are obliged to consider the public interest in your decision and the refusal notice must explain not only which exemption applies and why, but also the public interest arguments addressed in reaching the decision.

I would be grateful if you would kindly acknowledge receipt of this request as recommended by the ICO ("It would be good practice to acknowledge receipt of requests and to refer to the 20 working day time limit, so that applicants know their request is being dealt with").

Thank you very much once again, and I look forward to the information that I have requested, in accordance with the Act.

Yours sincerely,

Dr Neil Bhatia

Owen Boswarva left an annotation ()

Dr Bhatia,

I'm not sure those were the links you intended. The New Scientist article is from March and the Inquirer page is 404. You may have meant these:

https://www.newscientist.com/article/208...
http://www.theinquirer.net/inquirer/news...

The data sharing agreement itself has already been released under FOI, and New Scientist has put it on the web here:

https://drive.google.com/file/d/0BwQ4esY...

Dr Neil Bhatia

Dear Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust,

Further to my request, it is apparent that the data sharing agreement is already in the public domain
https://drive.google.com/file/d/0BwQ4esY...

as linked to in this article:
http://motherboard.vice.com/read/uk-hosp...

and now also at:
https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/1415...

Accordingly, I do not require it as part of my FOI request.

Instead, please could you also provide me with any privacy impact assessment that you have performed regarding this project.
Please take this request for the PIA as an addendum to my original request, rather than a new/separate FOI request.

Thank you very much.

Yours faithfully,

Dr Neil Bhatia

foi rf (ROYAL FREE LONDON NHS FOUNDATION TRUST), Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust

Dear Sir

Thank you for your request under the Freedom of Information Act. The reference for this request is noted in the subject header above.

You will receive a response from us within 20 working days or an explanation as to why this is not possible.

Yours faithfully,

Freedom of Information Team
Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust

Further to my request, it is apparent that the data sharing agreement is already in the public domain https://drive.google.com/file/d/0BwQ4esY...

as linked to in this article:
http://motherboard.vice.com/read/uk-hosp...

and now also at:
https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/1415...

Accordingly, I do not require it as part of my FOI request.

Instead, please could you also provide me with any privacy impact assessment that you have performed regarding this project.
Please take this request for the PIA as an addendum to my original request, rather than a new/separate FOI request.

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Dear foi rf (ROYAL FREE LONDON NHS FOUNDATION TRUST),

Just a polite reminder that you are required to respond to my request promptly and no later than by the end of tomorrow, 31st May.

Kind regards,

Dr Neil Bhatia

Dear foi rf (ROYAL FREE LONDON NHS FOUNDATION TRUST),

You are overdue in responding to my FOI request.

Can I take it that I will receive a response by then end of today?

Kind regards,

Dr Neil Bhatia

foi rf (ROYAL FREE LONDON NHS FOUNDATION TRUST), Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust

1 Attachment

Dear Dr Bhatia

 

Further to your request for information please see the response below in
red type.  You may also find the information we have published on our
website of interest – it is available at
[1]https://www.royalfree.nhs.uk/news-media/...

 

Your appeal rights

 

We hope that you will be satisfied with our response to your request, if
not you may ask us to review our decision in which case you should write
to Ms Emma Kearney, director of corporate affairs and communications,
Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust, Pond Street, London  NW3 2QG,
explaining what you would like us to review and including your reference
number.  If you are not satisfied with the internal review, you can appeal
to the Information Commissioner.  The contact details are: Information
Commissioner's Office, Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9
5AF, telephone 01625 545 700 or see [2]www.ico.org.uk

 

Yours sincerely

 

 

 

Alison Macdonald

Board Secretary

 

 

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Dr Neil Bhatia left an annotation ()

More information about NHS data sharing, including:

• care.data
• The Summary Care Record,
• The Hampshire Health Record
• The Berkshire Health Record (Connected Care)
• The Manchester Care Record
• The Stockport Health and Care Record
• The Salford Integrated Record
• The West Cheshire Care Record
• The North Staffs and Stoke-on-Trent Shared Record
• The Dorset Care Record
• Secondary uses of your information
• Local data streaming initiatives
• The HSCIC
• Google DeepMind & the Royal Free NHSFT

can be found at:

www.nhsdatasharing.info

foi rf (ROYAL FREE LONDON NHS FOUNDATION TRUST), Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust

1 Attachment

  • Attachment

    Privacy Impact Assessment for Waking Project 27 Jan 2016 V0 1 redacted.pdf

    211K Download View as HTML

Dear Dr Bhatia

 

I note that in a subsequent communication you advised that you no longer
wished to receive a copy of the information sharing agreement but
requested a copy of the privacy impact assessment.  This is now enclosed
and apologies not to have enclosed this with our previous response.

 

Yours sincerely

 

 

 

Alison Macdonald

Board Secretary

 

 

 

From: foi rf (ROYAL FREE LONDON NHS FOUNDATION TRUST)
Sent: 01 June 2016 15:25
To: '[FOI #331981 email]'
Subject: FW: FOI 1310 Freedom of Information request - Royal Free NHS
Trust & Google DeepMind - response

 

Dear Dr Bhatia

 

Further to your request for information please see the response below in
red type.  You may also find the information we have published on our
website of interest – it is available at
[1]https://www.royalfree.nhs.uk/news-media/...

 

Your appeal rights

 

We hope that you will be satisfied with our response to your request, if
not you may ask us to review our decision in which case you should write
to Ms Emma Kearney, director of corporate affairs and communications,
Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust, Pond Street, London  NW3 2QG,
explaining what you would like us to review and including your reference
number.  If you are not satisfied with the internal review, you can appeal
to the Information Commissioner.  The contact details are: Information
Commissioner's Office, Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9
5AF, telephone 01625 545 700 or see [2]www.ico.org.uk

 

Yours sincerely

 

 

 

Alison Macdonald

Board Secretary

 

 

show quoted sections

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