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56 Dean Street - Compensation - Update

Our legal team is now at an advanced stage for ongoing cases, and we can confirm that victims of the 56 Dean Street Clinic data breach will receive compensation. Contact us for a free and confidential chat if you are a victim and you would like to know more about our action.

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Almost 800 users of a sexual health clinic have had their private information leaked by the NHS in what is set to be one of the biggest data protection breaches in history.

Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt has called for the Care Quality Commission to conduct a thorough review of how the NHS handles data security.

As a victim of this unprecedented breach of data protection, you should know your rights.

What has happened?

An email newsletter sent to almost 800 users of a sexual health clinic inadvertently included the names and addresses of all of the other recipients. The newsletter was for those who had signed up to the clinics ‘Option E’ online booking and test results service, and the email reportedly displayed the full names and email addresses of around 780 recipients.

Any user who received the email could easily have had sight of the private details of other users of the service. Some of those affected have already come forward having seen the details of friends and people they knew themselves who they were not aware were using the service as well.

Despite the clinic at 56 Dean Street reportedly having a renowned record for providing high quality services, this simple lapse in data protection has potentially left hundreds of those affected extremely worried.

What you can do if you have been affected

A single data protection breach has affected almost a thousand patients whose rights to confidentiality have been grossly failed.

We live in an age so digitalised that very little that goes online remains confidential forever. It’s a terrible tragedy for anyone affected given that people suffering from lifelong ailments like HIV prefer to maintain their anonymity – even from close friends and family, and it is entirely reasonable and understandable. Such privacy is a person’s entitlement and should always be respected.

As a firm of lawyers who are already representing victims of NHS data protection and confidentiality breaches under the Human Rights Act, we can tell you that you have a right of action.

This breach, as we’re sure you can appreciate, has happened so easily but has already had such a significant impact on those affected. There is no way of knowing how far and wide the information can spread, and there is little that can be done to stop it from being seen by others. If such information falls in to the wrong hands, the consequences could be severe.

What we can do as lawyers is at least help you to seek compensation for having your private and confidential details leaked in the email.

How we can help you

As a victim you are very much entitled to claim compensation for this significant breach of your human rights. We know we can’t turn back the clock – but like many others before you who have been affected by leaks, hacks, and data protection breaches, you are entitled to damages for what has happened.

With our experience in representing victims of breaches with the NHS we can tell you now that we can understand how you must feel as a victim here. The stress and worry can sometimes never go away, but we can at least help you to claim damages that the law entitles you to as a victim of such a significant breach.

Your rights are already enshrined in law. We should never have to be in the position to make a claim for such poor handling of private information, but when it does happen like we have seen here, you can claim the compensation you are entitled to.

Confidential and discrete legal services on a no win, no fee basis

If you would like confidential help and advice, we can assist you.

If you would like to make a claim as a victim then we can help you discreetly and confidentially make a claim for what has happened to you. We are already representing victims of NHS data protection and human rights breaches right now, so we can help you.

If you received the email then you may have already been advised to remove it. If you have, do not worry that this stops you from making a claim. Follow the advice given from the clinic and the help lines, and contact us for advice if you would like to look in to what you could be entitled to claim for as a victim of the breach.

Investigations are already underway and anyone who has been affected should be recorded for the purposes of victims being able to claim.

What you are entitled to claim for

As a victim of a data protection breach you can be entitled to significant levels of compensation; particularly in scenarios like we have here given that it is such a sensitive and private issue.

Our lawyers are used to recovering damages for victims in the tens of thousands of pounds. Due to the very nature of the breach and how it can affect a victim involved, it is clear to us that the victims are entitled to damages. Data protection is treated with such importance for these very reasons. As a victim you can claim for the fact it has happened and for the stress, worry, and anxiety that has been caused.

Psychological injury claims can be complex but the awards are designed to reflect the severity of how the victim suffers.

Our lawyers have extensive experience in this very area of law – data protection and psychological injury claims – so you are in the best of hands if you need to contact us for help.

We are currently representing many of the victims of the Daybrook infection control and data protection scandal at the moment.

In a statement from our legal team

"Mistakes happen and we are only human - but breaches like this should never happen, and more needs to be done to stop a repeat of this terrifying incident.

We obviously welcome Mr Hunt’s call for a review of how the NHS handles secure information; but the fact that this has happened so easily and to a group whose privacy is of paramount importance is really very shocking.

All we can do now is help those affected by the breach and we hope that the outcome of the CQC review yields improvements to stop this from ever happening again."

Care Quality Commission and Information Commissioner’s Office Involvement

CQC’s Chief Executive David Beham has welcomed Hunt’s call for an inquiry, saying:

"People need to have trust in the NHS and have confidence that their personal medical records will be secure and protected at all times. We welcome the Secretary of State's request for us to carry out a national review of security arrangements across the NHS for patient-confidential medical information. We will work with Dame Fiona and others on this important issue."

The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) have confirmed that they are aware of the situation at the clinic, and they are making enquiries. Breaches of this nature usually carry heavy fines for organisations involved.

In a statement from the clinic run by Chelsea and Westminster NHS trust:

"We can confirm that due to an administrative error, a newsletter about services at 56 Dean Street was sent to an email group rather than individual recipients.

“We have immediately contacted all the email recipients to inform them of the error and apologise. Any concerned patients can call 020 3315 9555 and 020 3315 9594."

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Information on how we handle your data is in our Privacy Policy

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