SNP MP Deidre Brock grilled Rishi Sunak at PMQs on Wednesday over NHS England’s awarding of an IT contract to US tech firm Palantir.

It was previously announced that the contract for the “federated data platform” – valued by the NHS at £330 million – was awarded to the tech firm despite concerns from privacy campaigners.

The platform will help NHS trusts manage data in their hospitals, connecting up information held by different trusts and allowing the health service to draw conclusions about population health.

It is also intended to help individual hospitals manage their data better and drive improvements in treatment and waiting times.

It is not intended to cover GP medical records at this stage.

Following the award of the contract, Amnesty International called for the UK Government to require Palantir to “give cast-iron guarantees that they won’t monetise health data collected from the NHS”.

The firm’s founder Peter Thiel is a backer of Donald Trump and previously claimed the UK has “Stockholm syndrome” when it comes to the health service.

Speaking at PMQs on Wednesday, Brock asked Sunak: “NHS England has awarded £330m to Palantir, a controversial technology firm, to help it recover from its pandemic backlog despite deep concerns among many healthcare professionals about privacy, ethics and the safety of patient data.

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“In light of the Government’s recently commissioned report on unifying health data in the UK, can the Prime Minster confirm that no attempts will be made to force the Scottish Government to release the personal data of Scottish residents to any centralised system.”

In response, Sunak said that health was a devolved issue but that the UK “would look for every opportunity to improve patient care”.

“That’s what we’re doing, developing new technology which has had a proven track record in bringing down waiting lists and improving the optimisation efficiency of how theatres are scheduled.

“That’s the type of thing that we need to do to ensure patients get the care they need and we can get efficiency in the NHS.”

Earlier this year, a spokesperson for Palantir said: “Whether our support for the Covid vaccine rollout, the 28% waiting list reduction we’ve helped deliver at Chelsea and Westminster NHS foundation trust, or the development of software proved to help speed up cancer diagnosis, data privacy and security are always paramount in all of our work.

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“As a software company, we don’t collect or monetise data – we simply provide the tools to help customers organise and understand their own information.

“And precisely because our software is used in some of the most sensitive information environments in the world, it is built to ensure data-sharing is controlled, auditable and in accordance with customer-defined purposes only.”