An NHS digital identity scheme pilot has been extended to include external organisations.

NHS Login aims to allow patients to securely access online health records and services through a nationwide system and has been tested with 3,400 patients across England in the last four months as part of the NHS App pilot.

Now five partner organisations will trial the system: Tiny Medical Apps, an NHS-funded app for teenagers to manage long-term conditions such as asthma; eConsult, an online consultation tool used by 600 GP practices; Helm, a patient-held record being developed in Leeds which enables people to contribute to their own health and care record; Audit and Transparency Summary Care Record, an NHS Digital programme giving people access to and audit of their Summary Care Record; and Digital Child Health, an NHS programme to enable a digital version of the paper Personal Child Health Record to allow parents and carers to view and access the care record of childhood immunisations, screening and health check information.

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“This pilot is an exciting development to ensure external partners can connect to NHS Login,” said NHS chief clinical information officer Simon Eccles.

“Once that’s possible the login will be a catalyst to enable patients to take greater control of their own health and make greater use of digital tools.”

The full version of NHS Login, which will provide a single login for local and national NHS online services, is likely to be launched in 2019 or 2020.

Ian Phoenix, director of citizen health technology at NHS Digital, said: “A single NHS login will make it easier for people to use health and care websites and apps and lower the burden on the NHS by taking this task away from care workers on the front line.

“NHS Login will make it easier and quicker for patients and the public to see their personal health information online, which will empower people to manage their health more effectively.”