Information sharing plan to help cancer screening programme and voters

Thursday 14 May 09:20

New regulations are being proposed to make it easier for government departments to share information and to work more efficiently together. The changes would allow the central register of names and addresses held by the States to be used to improve the take-up of cancer screening and to help us explore how we can support voter registration.

These new regulations would enable health staff to use the central register to invite everyone who is eligible to take part in cancer screening programmes, with the aim of reducing the impact of cervical, breast and bowel cancer. At the moment, one to two women die of cervical cancer every year and twenty people die from bowel cancer. Breast screening detects cancers that are 50% smaller than those found in women who have not been screened.

The regulations would also allow a comparison between the electoral register and the central register of names and addresses, to see if voter registration can be made easier and kept up to date better.

The central register, which is the responsibility of the Chief Minister, is already linked to the Social Security Department’s benefit and contribution IT system, and is used by the Population Office to manage people’s access to work and housing. In time, more departments will be linked together, as the central register continues to develop and improve as a tool for the whole of government. 

The Assistant Chief Minister, Senator Paul Routier, MBE, said: “Government processes a lot of information, and it is important that we do this responsibly. We also need to make government more efficient and less department-focused. These new regulations will make a significant difference to Islanders.

“Linking departments together and sharing information in this way is a step towards Islanders being able to “tell us once” online when their circumstances change. This is what our reform and e-Gov programmes are about – designing our services around the customer and becoming more efficient.”

The Health and Social Services Minister, Senator Andrew Green, said: “As a Council of Ministers, we have prioritised health and well-being and more efficient government – this initiative supports these priorities. It is tremendously important that all of government works together to help Islanders stay healthy. This is big step in the right direction, enabling us to offer even better health services to the people of Jersey.”

The Information Commissioner has been consulted in the development of these Regulations and is content with their compliance with the Law.

The central register contains the following basic facts:

  • name
  • address
  • date and place of birth
  • date of arrival in Jersey (if not Jersey born)
  • gender
  • Social Security number

The Population Office moved to the Social Security building in La Motte Street in December 2014. This means that the Register of Names and Addresses Law, Control of Housing and Work Law, Social Security Law, and Income Support Law are all administered together. These new regulations will enable the information on the central register to be also used by the Health and Social Services Department, and for the purposes of a trial to assess whether it could be used to support electoral registration.

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