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 (Cth), the Privacy Amendment (Enhancing Privacy Protection) Act 2012, the Australian Privacy Principles and relevant State and Territory privacy legislation (referred to as privacy legislation).
- What information does this practice collect about my child?
When you become a patient of My Child Psychiatry and Psychology practice we collect information that is necessary and relevant to provide you with medical care and treatment, and manage our medical practice. This information may include your name, address, date of birth, gender, health information, family history, credit card and direct debit details and contact details. This information may be stored on our computer medical records system and/or in hand written medical records.
Wherever practicable we will only collect information from you personally. However, we may also need to collect information from other sources such as treating specialists, radiologists, pathologists, hospitals and other health care providers. We collect information in various ways, such as over the phone or in writing, in person in our practice or over the Internet if you transact with us online. Medical and non-medical staff may collect this information.
In emergency situations we may also need to collect information from your relatives or friends.
We may be required by law to retain medical records for certain periods of time depending on your age at the time we provide services. This is all recorded on a medical software program called Genie.
The information is saved onsite on an onsite server and is backed up regularly. No paper records are kept, any paper information given is scanned into the Genie program and then cross shredded and disposed of securely. Every time your child attends an appointment a new record is added to your medical record in Genie.
- Why is information collected?
To ensure that you receive the best care possible we need to manage your information effectively. Collation of information prevents unnecessary repetition of tests and previous treatments. Accurate contact information assists us with maintaining good communication with our patients and their parents/guardians and allows for prompt rescheduling of appointments if needed. Research is a key part of improving medical care and if research is undertaken in this practice patients will have the opportunity to read the information brochure as well as consent policies. If they give consent their information may be used for the project, which is covered by such consent.
- Who can see this information?
All doctors, therapists and administration staff of this practice can see this information. It is not accessible on the Genie software to anyone else, including referring doctors. Communication from our doctors and therapists to other doctors will usually occur through letters that are either sent by post to the referrer or sent electronically to a secure email address.
You have a right to request access to the information in your medical file, this can be requested from our practice either in writing or in person. This information is then taken from the Genie database and either printed or emailed securely to you. We may deny access to your medical records in certain circumstances permitted by law, for example, if disclosure may cause a serious threat to your health or safety. We will always tell you why access is denied and the options you have to respond to our decision. If you would like a third party to have a copy of your medical record, such as another doctor or allied health practitioner this can also be requested. A fee will be charged for the preparation and copying of the medical files.
- Uses and Disclosure
We will treat your personal information as strictly private and confidential. We will only use or disclose it for purposes directly related to your care and treatment, or in ways that you would reasonably expect that we may use it for your ongoing care and treatment. For example, the disclosure of blood test results to your specialist or requests for x-rays.
There are circumstances where we may be permitted or required by law to disclose your personal information to third parties. For example, to Medicare, police, insurers, solicitors, government regulatory bodies, tribunals, courts of law, hospitals, or debt collection agents. We may also from time to time provide statistical data to third parties for research purposes in a de-identified form. We may disclose information about you to outside contractors to carry out activities on our behalf, such as an IT service provider, solicitor or debt collection agent. We impose security and confidentiality requirements on how they handle your personal information. Outside contractors are required not to use information about you for any purpose except for those activities we have asked them to perform.
- Data Quality and Security
We will take reasonable steps to ensure that your personal information is accurate, complete, up to date and relevant. For this purpose our staff may ask you to confirm that your contact details are correct when you attend a consultation. We request that you let us know if any of the information we hold about you is incorrect or out of date.
Personal information that we hold is protected by:
# securing our premises;
# placing passwords and varying access levels on databases to limit access and protect electronic information from unauthorised interference, access, modification and disclosure
If you believe that the information we have about you is not accurate, complete or up-to-date, we ask that you contact us in writing (see details below).
If you have a complaint about the privacy of your personal information, we request that you contact us in writing. Upon receipt of a complaint we will consider the details and attempt to resolve it in accordance with our complaints handling procedures. If you are dissatisfied with our handling of a complaint or the outcome you may make an application to the Commonwealth or State Privacy Commissioner.