At Melbourne Osteohealth we are committed to protecting the privacy of patient information and to handling your personal information in a responsible manner in accordance with the Privacy Act 1988, the Privacy Amendment Act 2012, the Australian Privacy Principles and relevant Victorian privacy legislation.
Melbourne Osteohealth will only collect information that is necessary and relevant to provide you with optimal health care and treatment, and to manage our Practice. Both clinical and administrative staff will only collect and access your personal information that is relevant to their role in your health care. All staff members sign a comprehensive confidentiality agreement.
Non-consulting staff will access your health information only if required, for example:
1. To answer a query, you may have for example: the date of an appointment or referral.
2. To answer a query from an appropriate third party, for example: a relevant specialist requesting investigation results or another therapist requesting a list of current medication.
3. To ensure optimal administration of your health information, for example, the scanning of relevant documents into your file.
What personal information do we collect?
Information we collect about you includes:
1. names, date of birth, addresses, contact details
2. medical information including medical history, medications, allergies, adverse events, immunisations, social history, family history and risk factors
3. Medicare number (where available) for identification and claiming purposes
4. healthcare identifiers
5. health fund details
How do we collect your personal information?
Our practice will collect your personal information:
1. When you make your first appointment our practice staff will collect your personal and demographic information via your new patient registration form.
2. During providing health care services, we will collect further personal and medical information.
3. We may also collect your personal information when you visit our website, send us an email or SMS, telephone us, make an online appointment or communicate with us using social media.
4. In some circumstances personal information may also be collected from other sources.
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, TAC or the Department of Veteran’s Affairs (as necessary)
• In emergency situations we may also need to collect information from your relatives or friends.
Why and when your consent is necessary
When you register as a patient of Melbourne Osteohealth, you provide consent for all practice staff to access and use your personal information, so they can provide you with the best possible healthcare. This enables us to care for you as a comprehensive multi-disciplinary team.
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?
Melbourne Osteohealth 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 help you manage your health. We also use it for directly related business activities, such as financial claims and payments, practice audits, and business processes.
Who do we share your personal information with?
We sometimes share your personal information:
1. 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 the Australian Privacy Principals, relevant Victorian privacy legislation and this policy.
2. with other healthcare providers
3. when it is required or authorised by law (eg court subpoenas, police, insurers or debt collection agents)
4. 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
5. to assist in locating a missing person
6. to establish, exercise or defend an equitable claim
7. when there is a statutory requirement to share certain personal information (eg some diseases require mandatory notification)
8. during providing medical services, through Electronic Transfer of claims and records such as a MyHealth Record.
Only people that need to access your information will be able to do so.
Other than during providing medical services or as otherwise described in this policy, our practice will not share personal information with any third party without your consent.
Melbourne Osteohealth will also use your personal contact information for preventative health, health and service education and general marketing purposes. You may of course opt-out of direct marketing at any time by using the unsubscribe or opt out links in all communications.
How do we store and protect your personal information?
Your personal information may be stored at our practice in various forms. As paper records, as electronic records, as visual (X-rays, CT scans, videos and photos), as audio recordings. Melbourne Osteohealth takes all reasonable steps to store all personal information securely.
Information in electronic format, is stored in protected information systems. Hard copy format records are stored and disposed of in a secured environment. We use passwords, secure cabinets, for electronic data and confidentiality agreements for all staff and contractors.
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 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. We acknowledge patients may request access to their medical records. We require you to put this request in writing either by letter or email and we will respond within 30 days.
Where your information is requested for use by another practitioner, an insurer or other third party, it is MOH policy to provide a summary report that presents your data in a clear and useful manner. The provision of reports may occur a nominal fee reflective of the time and resources allocated to production and transmission.
Melbourne Osteohealth 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 your personal information held by our practice is correct and up to date. You may also request that we correct or update your information, and you should make such requests in writing to firstname.lastname@example.org
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. All complaints should be addressed to the Practice Manager and emailed to email@example.com or alternatively a letter can be posted to 47 Elgin Street, Carlton 3053. We will endeavour to provide you with a response within 30 days of lodging your complaint or concern.
You may also contact the OAIC. Generally the OAIC will require you to give them time to investigate, before they will respond. For further information visit www.oaic.gov.au or call the OAIC on 1300 336 002.