Patient owned medical records

This project has explored the possibilities of a patient led solution to the currently siloed nature of medical records within the NHS. The solution which has been designed is intended to take the responsibility for medical records at least partially away from the NHS, until NHS Digital are able to implement a solution which allows for data exchanges between the NHS nationally.


George Gill – History with Innovation
Ellie Leopold – Psychology with Innovation
Holly Simpson – Anthropology with Innovation
Matei Sterian – Computer Science with Innovation


The team were inspired by their personal experiences working in or interacting with the national healthcare service. They saw firsthand how the flaws in the current data management system impacted the quality of care that services were able to deliver, and ultimately, quality of life. Too often, data is mismanaged by service providers and not shared appropriately to ensure that practitioners have access to the most up-to-date information to give patients the best possible care. The team were inspired to change this and transfer the ownership of data back to the data subject, empowering patients to manage their own records.


It became clear through research that patients were the only common factor in all medical appointments. This led us to believe that patients as the carrier of practitioner written medical records was the optimum solution. However, upon user testing it became apparent that our solution could not rely on input from NHS staff. We therefore pivoted to a design which sees the patient use dictation software with images to record their appointments and health. Further testing with practitioners validated the usefulness of this design, this is the basis of the solution we are demonstrating today.


The NHS is in the process of unifying all services to create a clear flow of data between all primary and secondary care facilities. Our research shows that this is unlikely to happen until 2035 hence the need for an interim solution. Our system is aimed at all patients that use the NHS. We have identified key ‘high-use’ user groups that will benefit significantly from this application, namely those with long complex medical histories or individuals suffering from chronic conditions.


NHS Now enables patients to record and manage their own health data, avoiding the frustrations and suffering caused by lapses that currently occur in the provider management of health records. With NHS Now, rather than relying on a disjointed system, the patient is empowered to take their health into their own hands and share scans, results and more with the practitioners they choose. Once NHSX has achieved their goals of creating an interoperable patient record system, patients will be able to integrate their data with that stored by providers, creating a holistic and enhanced healthcare environment.