An NHS data quality manager has pleaded guilty to illegally going through patients’ medical records. Dale Trever, 22, allegedly looked at records on 431 occasions. All the records were of female patients.
Furthermore, Trever snooped on records relating to family, friends and colleagues on 336 of these occasions. Trever accessed the records between October 2008 and June 2009, while working at the Hull Primary Care Trust, sometimes at weekends as well.
At Hull Crown Court, Trever pleaded guilty to seven counts of breaching the Computer Misuse Act 1990 by accessing patients’ medical records without authority.
According to his lawyer, Trever denied copying, printing or altering any medical records. He is due to be sentenced next month.
John Fitzsimmons, director of performance, governance and informatics for NHS Hull, said: “Any breach of patient confidentiality is a serious matters, and so in this particular case, we welcome the fact that a successful criminal prosecution has been brought and that a custodial sentence is being considered. It sends a powerful message to NHS staff and the healthcare community about the importance of data protection.
“We hope the outcome, following a lengthy investigation, will go some way to reassure patients just how seriously we considered this breach of their trust to have been.”