RESIDENTS in West Yorkshire were shocked to find medical diaries containing private information about patients had been dumped outside a former health centre near their homes.
The diaries were found abandoned in a skip and strewn around the ground behind the boarded-up former medical centre in Alverthorpe, Wakefield.
The shocked residents found nurses’ diaries dating back to the early 1990s, many of them containing names and addresses, along with details about treatment and surgery for individual patients.
They said they are deeply concerned that personal information has been left scattered around, with no apparent concern for privacy.
One local woman said there was a lot of concern because many people living nearby would have used the former medical centre.
The woman, who lives nearby and did not want to be named, said: “It is awful that these records have just been left outside in a skip.
“A lot of the people who live around here will have used that centre, and it is a breach of their privacy.”
It is understood that the former Batley Road Health Centre, on Batley Road, Alverthorpe, which is next to a ginnel used frequently by people wishing to take their children to school and walk their dogs, has now been sold to new owners.
Yesterday the Information Commissioner’s Office, which helps enforce data protection, said it would investigate the circumstances surrounding the discovery of the dumped diaries.
A spokesperson for the Information Commissioner’s Office said: “We will be making inquiries into the circumstances of this alleged breach of the Data Protection Act before deciding what action, if any, needs to be taken.”