AROUND 200 Somerset NHS Foundation Trust patients have had their records “inappropriately accessed by a member of staff" after a data breach at Musgrove Park Hospital.

The trust said the member of staff accessed the hospital records of people known to them over a period of six years.

The member of staff had access to one hospital system as part of their role.

Somerset NHS Trust also explained this enabled them to see

  • demographic details;
  • A&E attendances including dates and basic admission information;
  • inpatient admissions including dates, the wards where patients were cared for, consultant, and specialty;
  • and outpatient appointments including dates, consultant, and specialty.

The Somerset County Gazette understands that they were not able to access clinical letters, discharge summaries, or the separate systems used for community, mental health, or sexual health records.

Somerset NHS is now contacting every person whose hospital record has been inappropriately accessed to let them know what has happened, to apologise unreservedly, and to offer to meet them to discuss it if they would like.

The trust has reported the breach to the Information Commissioner and Avon and Somerset Police is investigating.

Phil Brice, director of corporate services for Somerset NHS Foundation Trust, said: “We apologise unreservedly to every person whose hospital record has been inappropriately accessed in this way.

“Many NHS professionals need access to confidential information in order to do their jobs effectively.

“Every colleague in our trust undertakes regular information governance training and we understand that we are in a position of trust. Very sadly, this was not respected in this case.”