HC Deb 28 May 2004 vol 422 cc175-6W
Mrs. Iris Robinson

To ask the Secretary of State for Health when NHS patients will be assigned unique identity numbers for IT purposes. [176879]

Mr. Hutton

All existing national health service patients have already been assigned a unique identifier. NHS patients are assigned unique identity numbers either at birth (for children born in the United Kingdom) or when they register for NHS services. The number is used to enable different NHS organisations involved with the delivery of care to share information reliably. It is used in NHS information technology systems for this purpose.

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