At Hobart Cardiology and Medical Specialists, we are committed to respecting your privacy. We are committed to ensuring personal information is managed in accordance with the Australian Privacy Principles (APPs) as contained within the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth).
2. What is personal information?
‘Personal information’ is information or an opinion about an identified individual, or an individual who is reasonably identifiable.
Personal information may include ‘sensitive information’ about an individual such as a person’s race or ethnic origin, political opinions, religious beliefs or associations, philosophical beliefs, memberships, sexual orientation or health, genetic or biometric information.
‘Sensitive information’ can include (but is not limited to) health information, genetic information, biometric information.
3. What personal information do we collect?
When you become a patient of Hobart Cardiology and Medical Specialists, we create a record containing your personal information, including but not limited to:
- Your name, address, date of birth, contact details
- Your Medicare number
- Your health information and other sensitive information such as:
- GP contact details
- your medical history and test results
- family medical history
- medical images
- treatment history and advice, and
- other information required for your treatment.
Information we collect about you includes ‘sensitive information’ (specifically ‘health information’) within the meaning of personal information and privacy legislation.
We will also collect information about your Medicare eligibility (including your Medicare number), any private health insurance coverage you may have and any eligibility for benefits or compensation from another source.
When you visit our website, our Internet Service Provider will record and log your IP address, the date and time of your visit, the pages viewed and any information downloaded. You cannot be personally identified from this information, which is used for the purpose of site analysis and to help us offer an improved online service.
We will, where possible, only collect personal information through our website when you directly provide it to us, such as requesting our services by completing and submitting an online form.
4. How do we collect your personal information?
Hobart Cardiology and Medical Specialists may collect personal information from you when:
- You have completed a form directly in person with us
- You contact us via phone or email
- During services provided to you
- From a person responsible for you
- When provided by a referring doctor or other health specialist
- In other circumstances where you have provided consent or where allowable under privacy laws
We will, where possible, collect personal information about you, directly from you (for example, when we interact with you in person; when you complete forms or paperwork we give you, by email, phone, text message, or when you visit our website). In many cases, it may be necessary to collect your personal
information from another person such as your referring doctor, other health practitioners involved in your care, Medicare, your private health insurer, your partner, relatives or next-of-kin.
In cases where we collect personal information from referring doctors or other specialists, we assume that these specialists have obtained their own appropriate personal information and privacy consents from you
5. How do we use or disclose your personal information?
We may use your personal information for a purpose related to the primary purpose of collection and where it would reasonably be expected by you that we would use the information in such a way such as:
- To provide health services to you
- To communicate with you
- To comply with our legal obligations which may include mandatory notification of communicable diseases
- To help us manage our accounts and administrative services
- To ensure a treating doctor who leaves Hobart Cardiology and Medical Specialists has a copy of your patient records for your future care.
This information is only disclosed to persons outside our practice in the circumstances set out in this policy or as otherwise notified to you at the time of collection of the information.
Your personal information will generally be available to other health professionals and health services providers who are involved in your care. For example:
- Personal information held about you by Hobart Cardiology and Medical Specialists about your treatment and results may be disclosed to other treating specialists, at their request, to facilitate your treatment and for inclusion in the record held by other specialists at their external consulting rooms;
- We will send a letter to your local doctor (ie. General Practitioner or other Specialist) following a visit to Hobart Cardiology and Specialists. Sometimes your local doctor will contact us for additional information about your treatment;
- If you are admitted to another health service (for example, Hobart Private Hospital or Royal Hobart Hospital) as part of your treatment, we will send a summary of information, if requested, about your condition and treatment to enable the receiving health service to provide you with safe and effective care;
- We may disclose your personal information to independent health service providers who are contracted to provide health care services (for example, a diagnostic imaging provider, pathology provider or pharmacist); or
- Another health service provider or doctor may contact us to obtain information about you, so that they can treat you safely and effectively.
We may also from time to time need to disclose certain information, to comply with legal obligations. This may include mandatory notification of communicable diseases, or legal requirements such as responding to a court order or subpoena.
From time to time, we may disclose de-identified information to researchers and statisticians (e.g. Australian Institute of Health and Welfare), to evaluate statistics, identify user demands and to assist us in meeting patient needs generally. In addition, we may use the information that you provide to improve our website and services.
6. Are we likely to disclose your personal information overseas?
We may disclose your personal information to the following overseas recipients:
- any practice or individual who assists us in providing services (such as where you have come from overseas and had your health record transferred from overseas or have treatment continuing from an overseas provider)
- anyone else to whom you authorise to disclose it; and
- anyone else where authorised by law.
7. Can I be anonymous or use a pseudonym?
Due to the nature of delivery of health services, it would be impracticable for Hobart Cardiology and Medical Specialists to provide appropriate services to the individuals who have not identified themselves
8. What about direct marketing?
Hobart Cardiology and Medical Specialists will not use or disclose personal information for the purpose of direct marketing.
Hobart Cardiology and Medical Specialists may, however, provide you with information and updates regarding our website, treatments and services and changes to privacy or health laws from time to time. This service is free and you can unsubscribe at any time.
9. How do we store personal information?
Hobart Cardiology and Medical Specialists places a great importance on the security of all personal information associated with our patients, contractors and other individuals. We have security measures in place to attempt to protect against the loss, misuse and alteration of personal information under our control.
Please be aware that sending personal information by the internet or email cannot be guaranteed to be 100 per cent secure. If you are concerned about the security of email or the internet, you should arrange alternate delivery of information, for example, by registered post or encrypted email.
While we strive to protect user’s personal information, Hobart Cardiology and Medical Specialists cannot ensure or warrant the security of any information transmitted to it or from its online products or services, and users do so at their own risk. Once Hobart Cardiology and Medical Specialists receives your transmission, it makes every effort to ensure its security on its systems. Ultimately, you are solely responsible for keeping your passwords and/or account information secret. You should be careful and responsible whenever you are online.
We encourage users of our website to be aware that when they leave our website, either through a link or through their own browsing, to read the privacy policies or statements of each third party website that collects personal information.
10. How can you access personal information we have about you?
You may seek access to copies your personal information. We do require that you request in writing in advance, outlining exactly what personal information is required. A reasonable cost may be incurred for administrative processes such as photocopying and time of staff. You will be advised of these charges at the time of your request.
Our Privacy Officer in this practice to request personal information is Jenny Coombes. Email address: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Photographic proof of identification may be required in some cases for the provision of access to personal information.
Subject to the exceptions set out in the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth), Hobart Cardiology and Medical Specialists will facilitate access where reasonable and practicable to do so. If we refuse to provide you with access to the personal information held about you by us, then we will provide written reasons for such refusal.
11. What if your personal information is not correct?
Hobart Cardiology and Medical Specialists will take reasonable steps to correct personal information it holds, to ensure it is accurate, up-to-date, complete, relevant and not misleading, having regard to the purpose for which it is held.
If your personal information changes or you believe our records are not accurate, up-to-date, complete, relevant and or are misleading, Hobart Cardiology ad Medical Specialists will endeavour to correct this personal information. Inaccurate information will be corrected upon receiving information to this effect from you.
12. How and when do we destroy personal information?
Any paper documents are removed by a secure shredding service. Electronic information is maynot be deleted or destroyed but we reserve the right to do so.
13. How do I complain?
If you have a complaint about how we handle your personal information, your complaint should be directed in the first instance to our Privacy Officer at email@example.com or 62224200.
If you are not satisfied with our response, you can make a complaint to the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner:
Post: GPO Box 5218, Sydney NSW, 2001
Phone: 1300 363 992
Fax: 02 9284 9666