This policy is in accordance with Australian Privacy Principles (APPs) contained in the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) (Privacy Act), Privacy Amendment (Notifiable Data Breaches) Act 2017. Coral Coast Skin Pty Ltd, trading as Kaleidoscope Skin Cancer Clinic (KSC) is committed to protecting the privacy of our patients within our practice. Sensitive information collected is kept strictly confidential and used only for the medical and health care of patients, or financial and billing purposes. Basic contact information may be used for communication and marketing purposes.
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. This policy applies to all employees and patients of KSC.
COLLECTION, USE AND DISCLOSURE:
KSC recognises that the information we collect is often of a highly sensitive nature and as an organisation we have adopted privacy compliance standards 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 may be shared between the medical practitioners and staff of KSC.
Practice staff collect patients’ personal and demographic information via registration when patients present to the clinic for the first time. Patients are encouraged to pay attention to the collection statement that they complete as a new patient. During the course of providing medical services the practice’s doctors, nurses and technicians will consequently collect further personal information. Personal information may also be collected from the patient’s guardian or responsible person (where practicable and necessary) or from other involved healthcare specialists. Collected personal information will include:
- 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.
The practice holds all personal information securely, whether in electronic format, in protected information systems or in hard copy in a secured environment. A patient’s personal information may be held at the practice in various forms:
- As paper records
- As electronic records, including server and cloud based software platforms and programs. These include, but are not limited to, Clinic to Cloud, MailerLite and DermEngine.
- As visuals ie xrays, ct scans, videos & photos
- As audio recordings
Personal information collected by KSC may be used or disclosed in the following instances:
- 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 patient’s consent
- To assist in locating a missing person
- For the purpose the patient was advised during consult with the treating doctor
- As required during the normal operation of services provided. i.e. for referral to a medical specialist or other health service provider
- For medical billing purposes, i.e to Medicare and/or your health insurer (with your consent)
- For the purpose of a confidential dispute resolution process
- Some disclosure may occur to third parties engaged by or for KSC for business purposes, such as accreditation or for the provision of information technology, professional development, medical education, research, communications and marketing. These third parties are required to comply with this Policy, APPs and the Privacy Act.
- The Practice will not use any personal information in relation to direct marketing to a patient without that patient’s express consent.
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 three years.
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 seven years from the date of last entry into the patient record unless the patient is a child, in which case the record must be kept until the patient attains the age of 25 years of age.
ACCESS TO PATIENT INFORMATION AND CORRECTION
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. 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.
Patients may also request the practice corrects or updates their information and patients should put such requests in writing. Upon request by the patient, the information held by this clinic can be made available to another health provider.
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.
KSC understands the importance of confidentiality and discretion with the way we manage and maintain the personal information of our patients. The practice takes complaints 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 KSC 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 Managing Director, 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 8 Piccadilly Tower
133 Castlereagh Street
Sydney NSW 2000
Privacy Hotline: 1300 363 992
[ENDS] Last updated April 2020.