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Hospital finds lost data disks


29 September, 2008  

A health union is blaming staff shortages at a London hospital for the waste of £25,000 over four “lost” CDs containing confidential staff information that have now been found.

The data saga at Whittington Hospital in Archway included a police investigation and letters being sent to 18,000 staff warning that they could become victims of identity fraud.

The hospital contacted the national media and the loss was prominently featured on BBC and ITN news and in newspapers. A further 18,000 letters were sent out informing staff that the CDs had been found.

A hospital spokeswoman said all areas had been “thoroughly searched” after the discs went missing from the payroll department. They were found “following a wider search and communication to all staff”.

She said: “Nobody is being blamed, but a member of staff still remains suspended. The serious untoward incident panel will provide a full report.

“It is essential we learn from this and we are urrently in the process of further reviewing our procedures to ensure they are as tight and robust as they can be.”

The discs were being sent to the Warwick headquarters of american computer firm McKesson. Union chiefs blamed the loss on staff shortages in the payroll department.

Copyright PA Business 2008

Whittington Hospital