Privacy Policy

1. POLICY

 

The management of Donnybrook Medical Services is committed to protecting the privacy of our patients within our practice. Information collected is kept strictly confidential and used only for the medical and health care of patients

2.PURPOSE

 

To ensure patients who receive care from the practice are comfortable in entrusting their health information to the practice. This policy provides information to patients as to how their personal information is collected and used within the practice and the circumstances in which we may disclose it to third parties.

 

3. SCOPE

 

This policy applies to all employees and patients of Donnybrook Medical Services

 

4 COLLECTION, USE AND DISCLOSURE

 

Donnybrook Medical Services recognises that the information we collect is often of a highly sensitive nature and as an organisation we have adopted the privacy compliance standards relevant to Donnybrook Medical Services to ensure personal information is protected.

For administrative and billing purposes and to ensure quality and continuity of patient care a patient’s health information is shared between the medical practitioners of Donnybrook Medical Services.

Collected personal information will include patients

 

  • Names, addresses and contact details

  • Medicare number for identification and claiming purposes

  • Healthcare identifiers

  • Medical information including medical history, medications, allergies, adverse events, immunisations, social history, family history and risk factors

A patient’s personal information may be held at the practice in various forms:

  • Paper records (if before 2001)

  • Electronic records

The Practice holds all personal information securely, whether in electronic format, in protected information systems or in hard copy in a secured environment.

Personal information collected by Donnybrook Medical Services may be used or disclosed in the following instance:

  • For medical defence purposes

  • As required by law in instances of mandatory reporting of communicable diseases

  • Necessary to lessen or prevent a serious threat to a patient’s life, health or safety or public health or safety, or it is impracticable to obtain patients consent

  • As required during the normal operation of services provided i.e. referral to a medical specialist or other health service provider

  •  For the purpose of a confidential dispute resolution process

  • Some disclosure may occur to third parties engaged by or for the practice for the Practice business purposes such as accreditation or for the provision of information technology. These third parties are required to comply with this policy.

The Practice will not disclose personal information to any third party other than in the course of providing medical services, without full disclosure to the patient or the recipient, the reason for the information transfer and full consent from the patient.

The Practice will not disclose personal information to anyone outside Australia without need and without patient consent.

The Practice will not use any personal information in relation to direct marketing to a patient without the patients express consent.

The Practice evaluates all unsolicited information it received to decide if it would be kept, acted upon or destroyed.

Donnybrook Medical Services will employ all reasonable endeavours to ensure that a patient’s personal information is not disclosed without prior consent.

5. DATA QUALITY

 

Patient information collected and retained in our records for the purpose of providing quality health care will be complete, accurate, and up to date at the time of collection. Doctors are reminded to review past medical history at least every 3 years.

 

6. DATA SECURITY

 

All due care will be taken to ensure the protection of patient privacy during the transfer, storage and use of personal health information. Retention of medical records is for a minimum of 10 years from the date of the last entry into the patient record unless the patients is a child in which case the record must be kept until the patient attains the age of 30 years of age.

7. ACCESS TO PATIENT INFORMATION AND CORRECTION

 

The following will apply with regard to accessing personal and private medical information by an individual.

  • An individual has the right to request access to their own personal information and request a copy or part of the whole record

  • Individuals have the right to obtain their personal information in accordance with the Federal Privacy Act from 20 December 2001 onwards. Requests must be made in writing and an acknowledgement letter will be sent to the patient within 14 days confirming the request and detailing whether the request can be complied with and an indication of any costs associated with providing the information. Time spent and photocopying costs when processing a request can be passed on to the requesting patient. Information can be expected to be provided within 30 days.

  • Requests for information prior to 2001 will be considered by the Practice.

  • Whilst the individual is not required to give a reason for obtaining the information, a patient may be asked to clarify the scope of the request.

  • In some instances the request to obtain information may be denied, in these instances the patient will be advised.

  • The material over which a Doctor has copyright might be subject to conditions that prevent or restrict further copying or publication without the Doctors permission

  • The practice will take reasonable steps to correct personal information where it is satisfied they are not accurate or up to date. From time to time the practice will ask patients to verify personal information held by the practice is correct and up to date.

  • Patients may also request the Practice corrects or updates their information and patients should put these request in writing.

  • Upon request by the patient the information held by this clinic will be made available to another health provider

8. PARENTS/ GUARDIANS AND CHILDREN

 

To protect the rights of a child’s privacy, access to a child’s medical information may at times be restricted for parents and guardians. Release of information may be referred back to the treating Doctor where there professional judgement and the law will be applied.

9. COMPLAINTS

 

The management of Donnybrook Medical Services understands the importance of confidentiality and discretion with the way we manage and maintain the personal information of our patients. The Practice takes complains and concerns about the privacy of patients personal information seriously. Patients should express any privacy concerns in writing. The Practice will then attempt to resolve it in accordance with its complaint resolution process.

All employees of Donnybrook Medical Services are required to observe the obligations of confidentiality in the course of their employment and are required to sign Confidentiality Agreements.

In the instance where you are dissatisfied with the level of service provided within the clinic we encourage you to discuss any concerns relating to the privacy of your information with the Practice Manager or your Doctor.

If the complaint has not been resolved to your level of satisfaction all complaints should be directed to:

The Federal Privacy Commissioner

Level 7 Piccadilly Tower

133 Castlereagh Street

Sydney  NSW  2000

Privacy Hotline: 1300 363 992