British Afghanistan troops’ medical records lost

I was shocked to read that the medical records of hundreds of British soldiers are feared to have been lost in Afghanistan.

The Telegraph is reporting that two unencrypted laptops used by Army medics in theatre carrying the records of up to 1,300 troops were discovered to be missing in a recent equipment audit.

The audit discovered that nine laptops sent to Afghanistan between August 2007 and September 2008 had been lost. One was since found, and six were heavily encrypted.

The Telegraph says the two missing laptops were Theatre Operated Medical Devices, issued by the Defence Medical Systems Team (DMST) to battalions being sent on tour, for use in treating casualties in field hospitals.

According to an official report, the blank laptops are often uploaded with the medical records of an entire battalion before being deployed on tour – up to 650 men.

This surely must be a huge breach of security and confidentiality caused by the Ministry of Defence itself putting at risk details of the armed forces and their families – including home addresses and confidential medical issues.  It is disgraceful.


Hilary Meredith