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 (e.g. staff training).
What personal information do we collect?
The information we will collect about you includes:
• names, date of birth, addresses, contact details;
• medical information including medical history, medications, allergies, adverse events, immunisations, social history, family history and risk factors;
• your Medicare number (where available) for identification and claiming purposes; and
• healthcare identifiers.
Dealing with us anonymously
You have the right to deal with us anonymously or under a pseudonym unless it is impracticable for us for you 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 the following ways:
- When you make your first appointment, our practice staff will collect your personal and demographic information via your practice registration form;
- During the course of providing medical services to you, we may collect further personal information. Information can also be collected through E-Health services such as Electronic Transfer of Prescriptions eRX, My Health Record/PCEHR system, e.g. via Shared Health Summary & Event Summary.
- when you send us an email or SMS, telephone us or make an online appointment.
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; and / or
- Medicare or the Department of Veteran’s Affairs (as necessary).
Who do we share your personal information with?
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. in response to a court subpoena);
- 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 (e.g. some diseases require mandatory notification); or
- during the course of providing medical services, through Electronic Transfer of Prescriptions (eRX), My Health Record/PCEHR system (e.g. via Shared Health Summary, Event Summary).
Only people that need to access your personal 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?
Our practice stores all personal information securely via electronic format in protected information systems.
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.
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 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 or fill in our change of details form located on our website or at reception.
Privacy and our website
While we endeavour to ensure our website is as secure as possible, users need to be aware that the World Wide Web is not a secure medium. Bloomfield Medical Group and its associates take no liability for any interference or damage to a user’s computer system, software or data occurring in connection with our website. We strongly recommend user’s take appropriate measures to ensure their computer is protected against third party interference whilst on the web.
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 to the below address and we will then attempt to resolve it in accordance with our resolution procedure.
You may also contact the Office of Australian Information Commissioner (or ‘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. You are able able to make a complaint concerning privacy issues to the National Privacy Commissioner via the OAIC website. Those complaints will have a response within 28 days. You can also complain via post, the Privacy Hotline, or via the OAIC website:
National Privacy Commissioner
GPO Box 5218
Sydney NSW 2001
Privacy Hotline: 1300 363 992
Policy review statement