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Privacy Policy Protecting your Privacy at all costs

Introduction

This privacy policy is to provide information to you, our patient, on how your personal information (which includes your health information) is collected and used within our practice, and the circumstances in which we may share it with third parties.

Why and when your consent is necessary

When you register as a patient of our practice, you provide consent for our Medical and Health Clinicians 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 (e.g. 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.

    Correct Identity

    Those patients who refuse to provide our practice with their correct identity, with corresponding documents, will be required to pay for any and all consultations with the doctors of the practice. Any fees charged will not be able to be submitted to Medicare for a rebate.

    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 form.
    2. During the course of providing medical services, we may collect further personal information. This can include via electronic transfer of prescriptions, receiving records from your previous practice, correspondence with other health providers, My Health Records (PCEHR)
    3. We may also collect your personal information when you visit our website, send us an email, telephone us, make an online appointment.
    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 (e.g. court subpoenas)
  • when it is necessary to lessen or prevent a serious threat to a patient’s life, health or safety orpublic 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 (e.g. some diseases require mandatory notification)
  • during the course of providing medical services, through eTP, My Health Record (e.g. via SharedHealth Summary, Event Summary).
  • 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. In the event you are travelling outside of Australia and your records are requested to assist in your health needs whilst overseas, your records may be supplied with the correct authority.
  • 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. The majority of our records are in electronic format. Any correspondence, received in an alternative method eg: post, are then scanned into your personal records and the paper document is then shredded. X-rays, Ct scans etc are not held by the practice and are the responsibility of the patient. Documented photos are stored in your electronic records.

Our practice stores all personal information securely.

All electronic patient records, personal information, financial information etc are securely stored using individual passwords, confidentiality agreements for any staff and or contractors entering the premises. This system is maintained both within the practice, and via our IT consultants. Encrypted Back-ups of all data are performed daily and held securely in the event of a fire etc.

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. We require you to put this request in writing and our practice will respond within a reasonable time. Generally, within 30 days of receipt of the request. Once the request has been considered and approved by the doctor, you will be required to make an appointment with your preferred doctor. There will be a fee of $80.00 + gst charged for the doctor’s time, EDUCARE Specialist Services Privacy when you attend for your appointment. (please note this cannot be claimed through Medicare).

You must also provide, within your initial request, a statement identifying that the request is not required for any legal matters.

Our practice will take reasonable steps to correct your personal information where the information is not accurate or up to date. Each visit, 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 office@educare.net.au or by completing a new patient form with your new details.

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 contact our practice vis the following methods:

1 Postal: Managing Director, PO Box 139, Charlestown NSW 2290 2 E-mail: office@educare.net.au

3 Ph: 02-49434444

4 Please allow 30 days to receive a response, so our management team can review and respond

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 363 992

You may also contact NSW Health Ombudsman, https://www.ombo.nsw.gov.au/complaints; or by phone: 02-92861000

Privacy and our website

Our website www.educare.net.au is available for your convenience. You may contact us through our website via e-mail for your convenience. Please note: We do not provide medical advice via e-mail and our website is general advice only. Please see your doctor for any medical advice required.

Our practice newsletter is provided for those patients who subscribe. Your e-mail addresses are only used for this newsletter and are not provided to a 3rd party.

Policy review statement

This privacy policy will be reviewed regularly to ensure it is in accordance with any changes that may occur. We will advise our patients via our website, newsletter, or notifications within the practice.

Updated 2018

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