Doctors' private information leaked on recruitment website

Moosh

Well-known Member

Drd

Well-known Member
Sadly,the failure of security didn't suprise me in the slightest.Anyone who believes their medical details will remain confidential in the forthcoming NHS IT plans is living in cloud cuckoo land.

What did suprise me was the fact that sexual preferences were listed.As an employee I was never asked for such information and would never have given it,and as an employer I would not dream of asking such a question!
 

adam4478

Novice Member
my father was one of the trouble shooters called in when the company who won the NHS system bid realised they'd ****ed up properly and oversold/underpriced... they were told in no uncertain terms it would cost at least 3 times the winning figure on the bid and take 5 years longer to do but being eternal idiots (i meant optimists :)) they still went ahead and still ain't finished... the troubleshooters all resigned in disgust at the fact they wouldn't listen to the truth... even when told the plan was riddled with expensive holes and doomed to fail the fools still wouldn't listen!!!!!
 

Moosh

Well-known Member
Sounds like most big companies/civil servants!

As for their sexual preference being asked for, what does that have to do with how good someone does their job? Is a gay doctor better or worse than a hetrosexual doctor?? All answers on the back of a post card to: Department of Health (DoH - an exclamation of stupidity I believe)...

Moosh
 

Pat_C

Novice Member
Do organisations still blame this type of thing on 'computer errors' as if humans had no control over their programming and operation?
 

Setenza

Novice Member
I cannot see why details of a persons sexual orientation is relevant? Why hold such details? Only so you can discriminate?
 

alexs2

Well-known Member
Given that this represents our current government's latest attempt to fiddle with a system that was working quite well previously,this latest revelation is no surprise.
Initially the site had security problems with individual's details being not only visible,but able to be edited by all and sundry,including the applicant and anyone else who happened across the site.

The current debacle is ruining confidence in the career structure for junior doctors,and making the lives of those already in the system much more uncertain,with many now unsure as to where(or indeed if) they will fit into the "improved" training system.

The old system,where applicants looked for jobs via the BMJ(British Medical Journal) etc,of course had it's flaws,but by and large,applicants were able to apply freely for a job that they wished to go for,and were then chosen for interview largely on merit,and achievement,which the current system largely ignores.

Also,trainee numbers were quite closely linked to the number of senior posts available,and never before has there been a time where the prospect of a large number of highly(and expensively) trained junior doctors are in danger of having to look elsewhere for jobs.

It is a creation of which the government in general,and health secretaries in particular,should be rightly ashamed....there is of course little danger of that.
 

alexs2

Well-known Member
I cannot see why details of a persons sexual orientation is relevant? Why hold such details? Only so you can discriminate?

This is of course utterly irrelevant and discriminatory.....I have never attended any professional medical interview where such a question could have been asked,and I should be amazed that it was included in this system,but as I have said above,nothing about MTAS/MMC currently surprises myself or any of my colleagues.
 

Setenza

Novice Member
I had an interview this week and I'm sure I would have remembered if they had asked "which bus do you ride on?".

I blame Blair and his wife. Personally.

FOR EVERYTHING !!!!!!!!!
 

RuddyRoad

Well-known Member
The question about sexual orientation is meant to prevent discrimination. There's an onus on public (and, to be fare, non-public) bodies to ensure they don't discriminate on a number of grounds: race, sex, religion etc. Sexual orientation is just one of them. The data isn't meant to be used in the selection process, but they are expected to ask the question; candidates don't have to answer.

It is a bit of a nonsense really, but in this case the MTAS people were only doing what is expected of the NHS on a national level, from cleaners to clinical directors. They have even rolled out the questions retrospectively to incumbent employees - one part of which is are you transgender :eek: :eek:

Now, releasing the information to the www is a travesty, and would have thought grounds for a class action against them; you have to prove actual harm to get any compensation, but a vote of no confidence would be a nice start.
 

Drd

Well-known Member
This is even more confusing.How does asking the question prevent discrimination?
 

Moosh

Well-known Member
This is even more confusing.How does asking the question prevent discrimination?
Precisely. Surely by asking it then the selection is open to abuse??

Moosh
 

alexs2

Well-known Member
The question about sexual orientation is meant to prevent discrimination. There's an onus on public (and, to be fare, non-public) bodies to ensure they don't discriminate on a number of grounds: race, sex, religion etc. Sexual orientation is just one of them. The data isn't meant to be used in the selection process, but they are expected to ask the question; candidates don't have to answer.

It is a bit of a nonsense really, but in this case the MTAS people were only doing what is expected of the NHS on a national level, from cleaners to clinical directors. They have even rolled out the questions retrospectively to incumbent employees - one part of which is are you transgender :eek: :eek:

Now, releasing the information to the www is a travesty, and would have thought grounds for a class action against them; you have to prove actual harm to get any compensation, but a vote of no confidence would be a nice start.
This is simply irrelevant,and at any interview procedure,the things that can and cannot be asked are very clearly defined.
Sexual orientation is one of those things,and I have never encountered a selection process within the NHS where this has previously been a question that is expected to be asked,at any part of the procedure from CV through to final interview.....in fact quite the opposite is true.

Also.you should understand that the material contained within the site was not released to the web as you put it,other than by the default of inadequate security,and that this has been an ongoing problem with the site since it's instigation.

As to votes of no confidence.....if the current tide of medical opinion at all levels from students to consultants does not constitute that,and the number of interview panels that have had to withdraw from the process does not either,then most within the profession would find it hard to understand what does.


As an update,I think this link pretty much says it all

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/6599151.stm

Ending with it's suspension,the site administrators managed to refuse a UK born graduate an interview due to incorrect immigration status.

The point of course is that in a little under 3 months time,all of those applying would expect to be in post normally,and would have been well into that process by now under the existing system.
 

RuddyRoad

Well-known Member
This is simply irrelevant.....
OK, that's a nice way to reply to comments pasted on a forum. My whole post was irrelevant ???

Anyway, I wasn't suggesting I supported the move, I was trying to put in place some facts, rather than hysterical knee-jerk responses, which many would be inlcined to do...:rolleyes:

You might wish to view the NHS policy on Positively Diverse, which is meant to ensure the NHS staff reflect the communities they serve: http://www.nhsemployers.org/excellence/excellence-429.cfm

Again, I am not saying I agree with the whole idea, but the reason to ask the questions are so that it could be shown to any external auditor that the NHS was not discriminating on these grounds. If you have no data on these parameters of your staff, it would be impossible to prove you were not discriminating. Remember, you dont have to fill out a form someone to take a guess at you race/religion/sexual orientation during an interview and decide not to give you the job because of it.
 

RuddyRoad

Well-known Member
Precisely. Surely by asking it then the selection is open to abuse??

Moosh
The answers to these questions were traditionally on a separate form which was sealed in a separate envelope and not made available to interviewers, and therefore could not be part of any selection process. The information was purely for Human Resources to be able to check that discrimination was not being undertaken. Obviously the www fiasco has made a bit of a mockery of the privacy issue here...
 

alexs2

Well-known Member
The answers to these questions were traditionally on a separate form which was sealed in a separate envelope and not made available to interviewers, and therefore could not be part of any selection process. The information was purely for Human Resources to be able to check that discrimination was not being undertaken. Obviously the www fiasco has made a bit of a mockery of the privacy issue here...
exactly.....and the reason it should NEVER have been potentially or actually in the public domain on that insecure site in the first place.
 

alexs2

Well-known Member
The real problem with this issue is not so much specifics of interview protocol,but the way in which problems have been handled,by simply ignoring them and disregarding the increasing warnings of those actually at the sharp end of the system.

There remains the problem of what will happen in a short time from now....normally,new doctors begin their posts quite soon,and the trainees currently in post need to plan their next moves.
All of this is currently on hold whilst the government tries to work out its next move,and the level of uncertainty and confusion amongst junior doctors regarding their careers is rapidly rising,and obviously that of seniors when planning staffing and training levels.

Despite a few ineffective efforts from the health secretary,the confidence in the system is about as low as it could be,and it will take a bit more than Ms Hewitt being sorry for the "terrible anxiety" to restore that.

If it seemed I was saying your whole post was irrelevant,that wasnt the intention,and I am sure you can see why its a emotive subject...my reference to irrelevance is as regards the place of questions such as that anywhwere in the process,and with particular reference to MTAS
 

RuddyRoad

Well-known Member
Without wishing to teach my grandma to suck eggs, if you weren't referring to my whole post as irrelevant, then maybe you shouldn't have quoted it all :thumbsup:

I understand the problems facing junior doctors, particularly given the underlying agenda here is to dilute the skill mix so that market forces put the power directly in the hands of government. If there are less jobs than doctors, job security becomes more of an issue, so doctors are much more likely to tow the party line. Any gaps in service, will of course, be filled by nurses who have been on a 6 week prescribing course - a great substitute for a consultant who has undergone a 20 year apprenticeship.

I think we're on the same side, Alexs2
 

Drd

Well-known Member
Now behave,that's just plain silly.We all know that 6 weeks is a gross exaggeration:rotfl:
 

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