Why and when your consent is necessary
When you register as a patient of our practice, you provide consent for our GP’s 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. When we have medical students working with us we will always ask your consent to have them observe or start a consultation with you and document.
What personal information we collect and why
When you register as a patient of our practice, your doctor and/or their support team will need to collect your personal information so they can provide you with the best possible healthcare services.
The personal information we collect and hold generally includes:
- Your name, address, date of birth and contact details
- Information about your health condition, medical history, social and family history, risk factors, medications, allergies, adverse events, immunisations and treatment you may have already received.
- Medicare number or DVA number for identification and claiming purposes.
Only practice staff who need to see your personal information will have access to it. All practice staff have signed a Confidentiality Agreement as part of their Employment Contract with us.
How we collect your personal information
Our practice will collect your personal information:
- Directly and in person, over the phone or by completing hard copy forms
When you make your first appointment, our practice staff will collect your personal and demographic information via your registration.
If it is not possible to collect it from you directly, we may also collect this 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 Medicare or DVA
How we use document automation technologies
To ensure all the relevant patient information is communicated with the specialist, particularly included in referral letters, our practice has a system set up that will automatically document all the risk factors including allergies, current medications, family history, social history, past history and current active problems.
Who we share your personal information with and when
We share your personal information, with your consent, with:
- Other healthcare providers
- Statutory requirement to lawfully share certain personal information, such as mandatory notification of certain diseases
- Court subpoenas required or authorised by law
- When necessary to lessen or prevent a serious threat to a patient’s life, health or safety.
- During the course of providing medical services through Electronic Transfer of Prescriptions (ETP), or My Health record system.
- De-identified prescriptions through Medicine Insight.
- When there is a statutory requirement
Only those 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.
How we store and protect your personal information
Your personal information may be stored at our practice as paper records, electronic records, x-rays, CT scans and photos.
All our computer hardware is protected by our IT company Jose IT.
Our practice stores all personal information securely, and has strict protocols and policies to ensure your personal information is protected from misuse, loss, interference or unauthorised access:
- Electronic format is encrypted and password protected
- Hard copy records and information is stored in secure locked cabinets
- All staff and contractors must sign confidentiality agreements prior to commencing work with, and for our practice
How you can access and correct your personal information at our practice
Our practice will take reasonable steps to correct your personal information where the information is not accurate or up to date. We will ask you at different times to verify your information held by our practice is correct and up to date.
If you wish to access or correct your personal information, we request that you put it in writing and contact the Administration Manager, Cecelia Blainey on (03) 9580 1200 or in writing to Aspendale Clinic, 147 Station Street, Aspendale 3195. Your request for access and/or correction will be processed within 30 days.
How you can communicate with the Practice anonymously
If you wish to communicate with us anonymously, please put your concern/suggestion/complaint in the suggestion box located in reception.
How you can lodge a privacy related complaint and how it will be handled at our practice
If you have any concerns about your privacy or wish to make a complaint about a privacy breach, contact our Administration Manager, Cecelia Blainey on (03) 9580 1200 or in writing to Aspendale Clinic, 147 Station Street, Aspendale 3195. You should provide us with sufficient details regarding your complaint together with any supporting information. We will take steps to investigate the issue and will notify you in writing of the outcome within 30 days from the receipt date of original written complaint.
If you are not satisfied with our response, you can contact us directly to discuss your further concerns, or lodge a complaint with the Australian Information Commissioner at www.oaic.gov.au or by calling 1300 363 992.
Policy review statement
Privacy of isolation consultations and telehealth consultations
During the current pandemic, Covid-19 2020, 2021 and 2022 telehealth consultation was introduced in order for patients to be consulted over the phone. Patients who fit the criteria, having COVID-19 symptoms, elderly and vulnerable patients, are able to stay at home and have the Doctor of their choice telephone them and consult them over the phone.
We are able to do telehealth consultations for any patients who have been in the clinic in the last 12 months. Patients who have Covid-19 are eligible to have a telehealth consultation if they haven’t been in the clinic in the last 12 months.
All telehealth consultations are done in the privacy of the Doctors consulting room with the patient’s consent. The telehealth consultation is documented in the patient record and patients must be asked if there is a third person present, if so, this is also documented in patient health record.
During the current pandemic Covid-19 email was needed to be used in order for vulnerable patients not to leave their homes. Our clinic has an email policy and the practice team access emails in an efficient and safe delivery of healthcare services to our patients.
Patients who have Covid-19 symptoms are able to access private consultations in the isolation area which is located to the rear of our clinic. Privacy is ensured by access being given to one patient at a time.