Case Number 4663
Request Date 11/03/2016
Completion Date 29/03/2016

 

Details of the Request

  1. Does your NHS Trust use any outside company, individual or organisation to transcribe patient letters, records or any other patient information?
  2. Please give the names of the companies/ individuals/ organisations used, their addresses and the countries in which they are based.
  3. Please give the dates during which they have been employed to carry out these services by your Trust.
  4. Please state exactly what services the company/ individual/ organisation is contracted to do for the trust.
  5. In what form is the patient information sent to the company/ individual/ organisation?
  6. On how many occasions was patient information sent to the company/ individual/ organisation? Please give the figure for each of the past three years.
  7. How much money has been paid to the company/ individual/ organisation? Please give the figure for each of the past three years.
  8. How many complaints have you received about the standard of the work by this company/individual/organisation, if any? Please give figures for each of the past three years.
  9. On how many occasions has this data been lost or misplaced by the company/ individual/ organisation? Please give figures for each of the past three years.

 

Details of the Response

1. Does your NHS Trust use any outside company, individual or organisation to transcribe patient letters, records or any other patient information?

Yes

 

2. Please give the names of the companies/ individuals/ organisations used, their addresses and the countries in which they are based.

Dictate IT Ltd. 96a Clifton Hill, London NW8 0JT. The transcription teams are based in India.

 

3. Please give the dates during which they have been employed to carry out these services by your Trust.

March 2013 to date

 

4. Please state exactly what services the company/ individual/ organisation is contracted to do for the trust.

Transcribe outpatient letters from anonymised audio files.

 

5. In what form is the patient information sent to the company/ individual/ organisation?

As per the Trust’s Policy Governing The Processing Of Patient Letters Using The Dictate IT Transcription Service System:

“The Dictate IT system runs on a virtual DIT2.0 server which is hosted in the Trust’s secure computer room.

Dictators must ensure that their dictations contain no patient identifiable information other than the hospital number, which can be used by the Secretary to verify that the dictation is uploaded against the correct patient. Transfer of the anonymised audio file takes place via NHS N3 secure connection to the UK Dictate IT Data Centre. In all data transfer circumstances Dictate IT is expected to employ the highest industry standard security measures and use the same technology as internet banking transactions:

  • Secure Socket layer (SSL) connection for all communications to ensure no unauthorised interception of files can take place
  • Data transfer encrypted to 256 bit standard
  • User name and password challenge authentication mechanism invoked at the commencement of communications.

When transcription audio files are uploaded to the Dictate IT Data Centre servers they are automatically allocated to transcriptionists and editors. Access to the files is via secure VPN.”

 

6. On how many occasions was patient information sent to the company/ individual/ organisation? Please give the figure for each of the past three years.

No incidents of patient information being sent to Dictate IT have been recorded on the Trust’s incident management system, Datix.

 

7. How much money has been paid to the company/ individual/ organisation? Please give the figure for each of the past three years.

2013-14 – this was the transition period from one supplier to another, so figures are not readily available. As an indication, for three specialties, over a three-month period, the spend was approximately £12,000 2014/15: circa £300,000 2015-16 (11 months to 29/2/16) circa £ 350,000

 

8. How many complaints have you received about the standard of the work by this company/individual/organisation, if any? Please give figures for each of the past three years.

There have been no formal complaints from our patients/service users. Internally, there is regular informal feedback about the standard of the work. This information is not formally recorded.

 

9. On how many occasions has this data been lost or misplaced by the company/ individual/ organisation? Please give figures for each of the past three years.

No incidents of data being lost or misplaced by Dictate IT have been logged on the Trust’s Datix Incident Management system.