Tech Firm Palantir Rejects Concerns Over Role in NHS Data Platform Plans


U.S. tech giant Palantir has rejected concerns after the firm was awarded a contract worth hundreds of millions of pounds for a new NHS data platform.

The NHS Federated Data Platform (FDP) will aim to make it easier for health and care organisations to work together and provide better services to patients.

It was announced earlier this week that a group led by Palantir had secured the £330 million contract to provide the new shared software system.

But concerns have been raised by MPs about how patient data will be used and Palantir’s involvement in the deal.

Louis Mosley, Palantir’s executive vice-president for the UK and Europe, defended the company’s involvement.

“Data security and the ability to precisely control who can see what information can be a matter of life and death,” he told the Times of London.

He said that the “software enables NHS professionals to bring together data that a hospital already holds in multiple different systems that haven’t historically been able to talk to each other, while ensuring that staff only see information if they need to, in order to do their job.”

Palantir was co-founded by billionaire tech entrepreneur Peter Thiel, who was an early backer of former U.S. president Donald Trump, and has worked with the U.S. government.

It will be supported by Accenture, PwC, NECS and Carnall Farrar on the NHS contract.

NHS England has said that “no company involved in the Federated Data Platform can access health and care data without the explicit permission of the NHS.”

Steve Brine, chairman of the Health and Social Care Committee and a Tory MP, said this week that public concern would be better addressed with “more transparency and better communication about what this platform will do and how their data will be used.”