Current as of: August 2019
Why and when your consent is necessary
When you register as a patient of our practice, you provide consent for our GPs and practice staff to access and use your personal information so they can provide you with the best possible healthcare. Only staff who need to see your personal information will have access to it. If we need to use your information for anything else, we will seek additional consent from you to do this.
Why do we collect, use, hold and share your personal information?
Our practice will need to collect your personal information to provide healthcare services to you. Our main purpose for collecting, using, holding and sharing your personal information is to manage your health. We also use it for directly related business activities, such as financial claims and payments, practice audits and accreditation, and business processes (eg staff training).
What personal information do we collect?
The information we will collect about you includes your:
• names, date of birth, addresses, contact details
• medical information including medical history, medications, allergies, adverse events, immunisations, social history, family history and risk factors
• Medicare number (where available) for identification and claiming purposes
• healthcare identifiers
• health fund details.
Dealing with us anonymously
You have the right to deal with us anonymously or under a pseudonym unless it is impracticable for us to do so or unless we are required or authorised by law to only deal with identified individuals.
How do we collect your personal information?
Our practice may collect your personal information in several different ways.
1. When you make your first appointment our practice staff will collect your personal and demographic information via your registration.
2. During the course of providing medical services, we may collect further personal information such as through electronic transfer of prescriptions (eTP), My Health Record, eg via Shared Health Summary, Event Summary.
4. In some circumstances personal information may also be collected from other sources. Often this is because it is not practical or reasonable to collect it from you directly. This may include information from:
• your guardian or responsible person
• other involved healthcare providers, such as specialists, allied health professionals, hospitals, community health services and pathology and diagnostic imaging services
• your health fund, Medicare, or the Department of Veterans’ Affairs (as necessary).
When, why and with whom do we share your personal information?
We sometimes share your personal information:
• with third parties who work with our practice for business purposes, such as accreditation agencies or information technology providers – these third parties are required to comply with APPs and this policy
• with other healthcare providers
• when it is required or authorised by law (eg court subpoenas)
• when it is necessary to lessen or prevent a serious threat to a patient’s life, health or safety or public health or safety, or it is impractical to obtain the patient’s consent
• to assist in locating a missing person
• to establish, exercise or defend an equitable claim
• for the purpose of confidential dispute resolution process
• when there is a statutory requirement to share certain personal information (eg some diseases require mandatory notification)
• during the course of providing medical services, through eTP, My Health Record (eg via Shared Health Summary, Event Summary)
• de-identified information may be shared with local health networks for population statistics and aggregate analysis
Only people who need to access your information will be able to do so. Other than in the course of providing medical services or as otherwise described in this policy, our practice will not share personal information with any third party without your consent.
We will not share your personal information with anyone outside Australia (unless under exceptional circumstances that are permitted by law) without your consent.
Our practice will not use your personal information for marketing any of our goods or services directly to you without your express consent. If you do consent, you may opt out of direct marketing at any time by notifying our practice in writing.
How do we store and protect your personal information?
Your personal information may be stored at our practice in various forms including paper records, electronic records, pathology results, visual records such as X-rays, scans, video or photos, and audio recordings.
Our practice stores all personal information securely using password protected systems with regular backup. We maintain physical security controls around access to the premises and systems. We utilize CCTV in public areas for the safety of our patients and staff.
How can you access and correct your personal information at our practice?
You have the right to request access to, and correction of, your personal information.
Our practice acknowledges patients may request access to their medical records. Patients will not be charged for making this request – only the costs of complying with the request. Costs may vary from centre to centre, so please contact your relevant Eastbrooke Medical Centre in relation to exact costings.
Our practice will take reasonable steps to correct your personal information where the information is not accurate or up to date. From time to time, we will ask you to verify that your personal information held by our practice is correct and current. You may also request that we correct or update your information, and you should make such requests in writing to the Practice Manager of your local Eastbrooke Medical Centre (please see ‘Locations’ tab on www.eastbrookemedical.com.au for locations and practice addresses).
Privacy and our website
When a candidate applies for a position at Eastbrooke, we collect the following information:
• Skills and experience
• Character and behaviour data
• Screening checks (which may include screening such as health, reference, background, directorship, financial probity, identity, eligibility to work, vocational suitability and criminal record checks).
As part of our due diligence, we may check any information provided with a third party as relevant to the application. Our recruitment process also requires we conduct two reference checks. Eastbrooke may also collect personal and sensitive information relevant to the role including (headshot) photographs for identification purposes.
How can you lodge a privacy-related complaint, and how will the complaint be handled at our practice?
We take complaints and concerns regarding privacy seriously. You should express any privacy concerns you may have in writing. We will then attempt to resolve it in accordance with our resolution procedure. Please send all requests to “The Practice Manager” of your local Eastbrooke Medical Centre or to firstname.lastname@example.org with your practice location noted in the subject line.
You may also contact the OAIC. Generally the OAIC will require you to give them time to respond, before they will investigate. For further information visit www.oaic.gov.au or call the OAIC on 1300 336 002.
Policy review statement
This policy will be reviewed by Eastbrooke Medical Centres/Eastbrooke Family Clinics Management on a regular basis to ensure that it continues to adhere to the Australian Privacy Principles. Should an update of this policy be required, an updated version will be published on the Eastbrooke Medical Centres website (www.eastbrookemedical.com.au) as well as updated on display at the Eastbrooke Medical Centre/Eastbrooke Family Clinic which you attend. Medical Centre staff will place a notice up to advise patients of the update to policy.