YOUR PRIVACY IS OUR BUSINESS
The provision of quality health care is our principal concern. It requires a doctor-patient relationship of trust and confidentiality. Your doctor regards patient health information as confidential and will only collect this information with patient consent.
Every effort will be made to discuss these matters with patients at the time personal health information is collected. Because there will be occasions when it is not practicable to make patients aware of these matters at the time of collection, this statement is designed to outline how this practice endeavours to protect the privacy of patients’ personal health information.
COLLECTION, USE AND DISCLOSURE OF YOUR INFORMATION
Information about a patient’s medical and family health history is needed to provide accurate medical diagnosis and appropriate treatment. We will be fair in the way we collect information about our patients. This information is generally collected from the patient, but may be collected from another person with the patient’s consent. From time to time we may receive patient information from other sources. When this occurs we will, wherever possible, make sure the patient knows we have received this information.
Medical care requires full knowledge of patient health information by all members of a medical team. To ensure quality and continuity of patient care a patient’s health information may have to be shared with other health providers. Some information about patients is also provided to Medicare, and private health funds if relevant, for billing and medical rebate purposes.
The doctors in this practice are members of various medical and professional bodies including medical defence organizations. There may be occasions when disclosure of patient information is required for medical defence purposes.
There are also circumstances where a medical practitioner is legally bound to disclose personal information. An example of this is the mandatory reporting of communicable diseases.
It is necessary for us to keep patients’ information after their last attendance at this practice for as long as is required by law, or is prudent, having regard to administrative requirements.
A patient has a right to access their information. They may ask to view the information, or ask for a copy of a part, or of the whole, record. While not required to give reasons for their request, a patient may be asked to clarify the purpose for the request.
There are some circumstances in which access may be denied but, in such an event, the patient will be advised of the reason.
A charge may be payable where the practice incurs costs in providing access. This will depend on the nature of the access.
The material over which the doctor has copyright might be subject to conditions that prevent further copying or publication without the doctor’s permission.
If a patient finds that the information held on them is not accurate or complete, the patient may have that information amended accordingly.
Upon request, patients health information held by this practice will be made available to another health service provider.
PARENTS / GUARDIANS AND CHILDREN
The right of children to privacy of their health information, based on the professional judgment of the doctor, and consistent with the law, might at times restrict access to this information by parents or guardians.
It is important to us that your expectations about the way in which we handle your information are the same as ours.
Please be assured that you will not, in any way, be adversely affected by making a complaint.
Please do not hesitate to discuss any concerns, questions or complaints about any issues related to the privacy of your personal information with your doctor. If you are still dissatisfied you can complain to the Victorian Health Services Commission whose contact details are:
Health Services Commissioner
Complaints and Information
30th Floor, 570 Bourke St
MELBOURNE VIC 3000
Telephone: (61) 3 8601 5200
Toll Free: 1800 136 066
Fax No: (61) 3 8601 5219
TTY No: 1300 550 275
Privacy Hotline: 1300 363 992