Our Privacy Policy 

1. Introduction

Our practice is committed to best practice in relation to the management of information we collect. This practice has developed a policy to protect patient privacy in compliance with the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) (‘the Privacy Act’).

Our policy is to inform you of:

• The kinds of information that we collect and hold, which, as a medical practice, is likely to be ‘health information’ for the purposes of the Privacy Act; • How we collect and hold personal information;

• The purposes for which we collect, hold, use and disclose personal information;

• How you may access your personal information and seek the correction of that information;

• How you may complain about a breach of the Australian Privacy Principles and how we will deal with such a complaint;

• Whether we are likely to disclose personal information to overseas recipients

It is the policy of this practice to maintain security of personal health information at all times and to ensure that this information is available only to doctors and authorised members of staff.

2. What kinds of personal information do we collect?

The type of information we may collect and hold includes:

• Your name, address, date of birth, email and contact details

• Medicare number, DVA number and other government identifiers, although we will not use these for the purposes of identifying you in our practice

• Other health information about you, including:

- Notes of your symptoms or diagnosis and the treatment given to you

- Your specialist reports and test results

- Your appointment and billing details

- Your prescriptions and other pharmaceutical purchases

- Your genetic information

- Your healthcare identifier

- Any other information about your race, sexuality or religion, when collected by a health service provider.

3. How do we collect and hold personal information?

We will generally collect personal information:

• From you directly when you provide your details to us. This might be via a face to face discussion, telephone conversation, registration form or online form

• From a person responsible for you

• From third parties where the Privacy Act or other law allows it - this may include, but is not limited to: other members of your treating team, diagnostic centres, specialists, hospitals, the My Health Record system, electronic prescription services, Medicare, your health insurer, the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme

4. Why do we collect, hold, use and disclose personal information?

In general, we collect, hold, use and disclose your personal information for the following purposes:

• To provide health services to you

• To communicate with you in relation to the health service being provided to you

• To comply with our legal obligations, including, but not limited to, mandatory notification of communicable diseases or mandatory reporting under applicable child protection legislation.

• To help us manage our accounts and administrative services, including billing, arrangements with health funds, pursuing unpaid accounts, management of our ITC systems

• For consultations with other doctors and allied health professional involved in your healthcare. If you have any information that your consider strictly confidential please discuss this with your treating doctor.

• To obtain, analyse and discuss test results from diagnostic and pathology laboratories

• For identification and insurance claiming

• If you have a My Health Record, to upload your personal information to, and download your personal information from, the My Health Record system. • Information can also be disclosed through an electronic transfer of prescriptions service.

• To liaise with your health fund, government and regulatory bodies such as Medicare, the Department of Veteran’s Affairs and the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC) (if you make a privacy complaint to the OAIC), as necessary.

5. How can you access and correct your personal information?

You have a right to seek access to, and correction of the personal information which we hold about you. We will charge a reasonable fee for the provision of such information. For details on how to access and correct your health record, and any applicable fees, please contact our practice as noted below under ‘Contact Details’

We will normally respond to your request within 30 days.

6. How do we hold your personal information?

Our staff are trained and required to respect and protect your privacy. We take reasonable steps to protect information held from misuse and loss and from unauthorised access, modification or disclosure. This includes:

• Firewalls and strong password protection of our server

• Encrypted email when transferring information to specialist and allied health providers

• Secured premises with alarm monitoring

• Our staff sign confidentiality agreements

• Secure document destruction services are used

7. Privacy related questions and complaints

If you have any questions about privacy-related issues or wish to complain about a breach of the Australian Privacy Principles or the handling of your personal information by us, you may lodge your complaint in writing to (see below for details).

We will normally respond to your request within 30 days.

If you are dissatisfied with our response, you may refer the matter to the OAIC:

Phone: 1300 363 992 Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Fax: +61 2 9284 9666 Post: GPO Box 5218 Sydney NSW 2001

Website: www.oaic.gov.au/individuals/how-do-i-make-a-privacy-complaint

8. Anonymity and pseudonyms

The Privacy Act provides that individuals must have the option of not identifying themselves, or of using a pseudonym, except in circumstances where it is impracticable. Except in exceptional circumstances it is impracticable to not identify yourself or to use a pseudonym as medical services such as pathology and radiology require identification as does billing via Medicare, Department of Veterans Affairs, your health insurer or insurance company.

9. Overseas disclosure.

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)

• Overseas transcription services

• Overseas based cloud storage

• Anyone else to whom you authorise us to disclose it

Currently however the practice does not use any transcription services nor any cloud based storage of private information

10. Updates to this Policy

This Policy will be reviewed from time to time to take account of new laws and technology, changes to our operations and other necessary developments. Updates will be publicised on the practice’s website. A copy of our Policy will be made available on request.

11. Privacy and websites

We use a third party provider – 1st Available – so that you may book appointments online. This provider requires your name and date of birth so that it can allocate appointments to the correct patient. The practice does not collect any personal information on its Website and does not interact with any social media.

12. Contact details for privacy related issues

Our practice manager is the privacy officer. You can contact the practice manager either by phone (02 9907 1177), by fax (02 9905 6310) or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Updated: June 2016

Health Research & Statistics

We do use anonymous patient health information from time to time in research and statistical projects to improve health care in the community, provided that such studies have been approved by the government or medical colleges and are not related to any commercial enterprise.



Accessing to your Medical Record

You may ask your doctor about any aspect of your health care, and information in your record, to which you can have access.  Your doctor will be pleased to provide a full explanation of the medical record. You will be expected to cover any costs that might be incurred in this process.

If you have any concerns regarding the privacy of your health information or regarding the accuracy of the information held by the practice, you should discuss these with your doctor.

Inaccurate information will be corrected, or your concerns noted in the records if it is not possible or desirable to alter the original record.

Further information on privacy legislation is available from The Office of the Federal Privacy Commissioner, phone 1300 363 992.

Transfer of Records

We are required by law to keep original records however a summary of your medical history can be provided free of charge if you are moving away or transferring to a new doctor.  We require your signed authority to release information.

Your full record can be transferred on CD or by printing and posting -  however a charge may be made for this.


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Register for My Health Record - the electronic health record – Previously called the PCEHR - visit the website

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