Millions of NHS patients have been reviewed and thousands wrongly removed from practice lists as Primary Care Trusts try to hit government targets of removing patients from practice lists, Freedom of Information requests have revealed. 

Pulse report:

Tens of thousands of suspected ‘ghost patients’ have been wrongly removed from practice lists and had to re-register with GPs under heavy-handed list-cleansing drives that have targeted the most vulnerable, Pulse can reveal.

A Pulse investigation reveals over half of patients removed from practice lists under PCT list validation drives in some areas have been forced to re-register with their practice, with GPs often blamed for the administrative error.

PCTs are scrambling to hit the Government’s target of removing 2.5 million patients from practice lists by April this year, often targeting the most vulnerable patients, including those with learning disabilities, the very elderly and children.

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I am a journalist and author. I am a journalist at the UK edition of WIRED magazine. In 2015, my first book Freedom of Information: A Practical Guide for UK Journalists, was published. My second book Reed Hastings: Building Netflix, was published in March 2020. I created FOI Directory in 2012 and have maintained it in my spare time ever since.