Revision: V3.1 (07/04/2019)

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 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 (eg 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, immunizations, social history, family history and risk factors

  • Medicare number (where available) for identification and claiming purposes

  • healthcare identifiers

  • health fund details.

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 authorized by law to only deal with identified individuals.

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.

  2. During the course of providing medical services, we may collect further personal information. Information can also be collected through electronic transfer of prescriptions (eTP), My Health Record, eg via Shared Health Summary,

  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. Often this is because it is not practical or reasonable to collect it from you directly. This may include information from:

    1. Your guardian or responsible person

    2. Other involved healthcare providers, such as specialists, allied health professionals, hospitals, community health services and pathology and diagnostic imaging services

    3. 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 authorized by law (eg court subpoenas)

  • 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 (eg some diseases require mandatory notification)

  • During the course of providing medical services, through eTP, My Health Record (eg via Shared Health 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.

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 in our practice in various forms. This information will primarily be stored in electronic format, however, we also keep paper-based records in a circumstance such as, but not limited to: 

  • X-Rays information

  • CT Scan or other medical scan information

  • Video and Photo multimedia used for medical or security purposes. 

Our practice stores all personal information securely.

  • Our practice keeps electronic and computer systems up to date with the latest firmware and software patches in accordance with the RACGP guidelines. More information regarding these standards can be found in the below link

  • Paper-based records are converted to electronic format, as soon as possible, after the relevant authorized staff have reviewed said documents. Conversion of the paper-based documents is performed out of sight of unauthorized personnel. 

  • Patient information, or Personal Identifiable Information when stored electronically is encrypted in accordance with the RACGP Guidelines.

  • Our practice’s clinical software is accessible only via unique individual passwords that give access to information according to the person’s level of authorization. All staff members and contractors sign a confidentiality agreement prior starting their employment

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 [specify how your practice will receive such requests] and our practice will respond within a reasonable time. [Insert a reasonable timeframe specific to your practice processes, eg 30 days is generally considered reasonable. Also provide details of any fees that may be associated with providing this information if applicable – these must not be excessive. Patients cannot be charged for making the request – only for the costs of complying with the request].

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 current. You may also request that we correct or update your information, and you should make such requests in writing to reception@alsalammedical.com.au

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. If you would like to make a formal complaint please do so in writing. The best contact point will be emailing, reception@alsalammedical.com.au. If you require more information regarding our practices complaint resolution process, please don't hesitate to speak to our staff, or email us a request. Formal complaints carry a turn around time of up to 30 business days.

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.auor call the OAIC on 1300 363 992.

Privacy and our website

We use Google Analytics to make our site better. You can opt out of Google Analytics at any time. This information will not be used for marketing or medical purposes. 

Closed Circuit Television (CCTV)

Alsalam Medical is committed to ensuring that personal information collected by it is dealt with in accordance with the Information Privacy Principles contained in the Information Privacy Act 2009 and the Australian Privacy Principles contained in the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth).

Alsalam Medical uses CCTV systems for 24-hour video surveillance, which monitors and records activity in the following areas:

  • Main entrance to the premises

  • Driveway on the side of the premises

  • At the rear of the premises

  • Front Courtyard of the premisis

The purpose of this monitoring and recording is to provide a safe and secure work environment for Alsalam Medical staff and patients to Alslalam Medical as well as members of the general public. Video cameras are only used in the areas specified in this privacy notice.

Video surveillance is being used to deter any form of aggressive, harmful or unlawful behavior and to assist in identifying offenders. Should an incident occur, the recordings may be provided as evidence to law enforcement authorities such as the police to assist with investigations or enquiries. CCTV and video footage is not used to monitor staff performance. However, it may be used to investigate allegations of serious misconduct by staff.

The images recorded by the cameras are securely stored as digital files within the CCTV software, which is only accessible to authorized staff in the medical practice. The digital files are stored for a maximum of 6 months weeks after which they are programmed to be automatically erased unless required by law enforcement authorities. Images are viewed only by authorised staff. Controlled access to the secured footage is strictly maintained. Copies of recordings will not be made for other purposes unless they are relevant to the purpose of surveillance or are required by law. Any copies made are stored in a securely lockable area.

Circumstances under which recordings will be shown to a third party include:

  • unlawful acts (police)

  • occupational health and safety complaints (eg Workplace Health & Safety Officer and Alsalam Medical’ Insurer)

  • when otherwise required by law (eg court order).

For further information, please contact our reception staff

Policy review statement

This policy will be reviewed regularly and updated in accordance with the legislation. New policies will be available on the practice website and provided by request by reception staff.