Privacy Policy – Home Support Services

Privacy Policy

Home Support Services Pty Limited and its related bodies corporate (Home Support Services) are committed to protection of your personal information (including sensitive or health information) in accordance with the Australian Privacy Principles (APP) contained in the Privacy Act 1988 and as amended by the Privacy Amendment (Enhancing Privacy Protection) Act 2012.

The purpose of this Privacy Policy is to promote respect and care for the privacy of our clients.

This Privacy Policy details the way in which client information may be collected, disclosed, used, stored, accessed or handled by us.

  1. Collection of Information
    1. Home Support Service will only collect information from clients if it is required for one or more of its functions or activities, including for the purpose of being able to provide clients with care services.
    2. Home Support Services will only collect information by lawful and fair means and not in an unreasonably intrusive way.
    3. At or before the time (or, if that is not practicable, as soon as practicable after) Home Support Services collects information from the client, Home Support Services will take reasonable steps to ensure that the client is aware of:
      1. The identity of Home Support Services and how to contact us;
      2. The fact that the client is able to gain access to the information;
      3. The purposes for which the Information is collected;
      4. The kind of personal information that HSS will collect;
      5. The organisations (or the types of organisations) to which the information may be disclosed;
      6. Any law that requires the particular information to be collected; and
      7. The main consequences (if any) for the client if all or part of the information is not provided.
    4. If it is reasonable and practicable to do so, Home Support Services will collect information about the client and only from the client.
    5. If Home Support Services collects information about the client from someone else, we will take reasonable steps to ensure that the client has been made aware of the matters listed in paragraph 1.3, except to the extent that making the client aware of the matters that would pose a serious threat to the life or health of any individual.
    6. Before any information is collected, Home Support Services staff will obtain consent from the client to do so. This consent is to be obtained from the client in writing by signing the relevant consent form. Where it is not possible to obtain the client’s written consent, consent may be obtained verbally from the client or by consent on the website.
    7. Home Support Services may collect various types of information about the client such as their name, address, contact details and information on their medical condition. Home Support Services will collect this information from the client solely to provide them with the most appropriate care of the client’s situation.
    8. The client may request to use a pseudonym or remain anonymous only in instances where Home Support Services is not required by law to deal with individuals who have identified themselves or otherwise where it is impractical to do so.
  1. Use and Disclosure of Information
    1. Home Support Services will use information only for limited purposes. These are the purposes for which it was given to us (the primary purpose), and for related purposes where the client would reasonably expect us to use it such as:
      1. Providing the client with further information about treatment options;
      2. Effective management of services for the client;
      3. Billing;
      4. Disclosure to a medical expert; or
      5. For quality assurance or clinical audit activities.
    2. Specifically Home Support Services will not use or disclose information about the client for a purpose (the secondary purpose) other than the primary purpose of collection unless:
      1. Both of the following apply:
        1. The secondary purpose is related to the primary purpose of collection and, if the personal information is sensitive information, directly related to the primary purpose of collection;
        2. The client would reasonably expect us to use or disclose the information for the secondary purpose;
      2. The client has consented to the use or disclosure;
      3. If the information is not sensitive information and the use of the information is for the secondary purpose of direct marketing as permitted under the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) as amended by the Privacy Amendment (Enhancing Privacy Protection) Act 2012;
      4. If the information is health information and the use or disclosure is necessary for research, or the compilation or analysis of statistics, relevant to public health or public safety:
        1. It is impracticable for Home Support Services to seek the client’s consent before the use or disclosure; and
        2. The use or disclosure is conducted in accordance with guidelines approved by the Commissioner under the section 95A of the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth);
        3. In the case of disclosure – Home Support Services reasonably believes that the recipient of the health information will not disclose the health information, or personal information derived from the health information;
      5. Home Support Services reasonably believes that the use or disclosure is necessary to lessen or prevent:
        1. A serious and imminent threat to an individual’s life, health or safety; or
        2. A serious threat to public health or public safety;
      6. Home Support Services has reason to suspect that unlawful activity has been, is being or may be engaged in, and uses or discloses the information as a necessary part of its investigation of the matter or in reporting its concerns to relevant persons or authorities;
      7. The use or disclosure is required or authorised by or under law, such as the mandatory reporting of child abuse (under care and protection laws) or the notification of diagnoses of certain communicable diseases (under public health laws); or
      8. Home Support Services reasonably believes that the use or disclosure is reasonably necessary for one or more of the following by or on behalf of an enforcement body:
        1. The prevention, detection, investigation, prosecution or punishment of criminal offences, breaches of law imposing a penalty or sanction or breaches of a prescribed law;
        2. The enforcement of laws relating to the confiscation of the proceeds of crime;
        3. The protection of the public revenue;
        4. The prevention, detection, investigation or remedying of seriously improper conduct or prescribed conduct; and
        5. The preparation for, or conduct of, proceedings before any court or tribunal, or implementation of the orders of a court or tribunal.
    3. Unless the client would reasonably expect Home Support Services to use or disclose the information or expressly authorizes Home Support Services to do so, Home Support Services will not use or disclose personal information for the purpose of direct marketing. Additionally, Home Support Services will provide the client with the option to opt out of receiving direct marketing at any time either verbally or in writing.
  1. Quality of Information

 Home Support Services will take reasonable steps to make sure that the information it collects uses or discloses is accurate, complete and up-to-date.

  1. Security of Information
    1. Home Support Services will take reasonable steps to protect the information it holds from misuse and loss and from unauthorised access, modification or disclosure.
    2. In relation to storage of Information:
      1. Home Support Services uses patient management software known as Jade Care Domiciliary (JCD). JCD is fully integrated care management solution allowing for the majority of information and records to be maintained electronically. Access to JCD data is limited to those personnel with the requisite JCD security password:
      2. Home Support Services utilizes the services of Medikeeper Inc (Medikeeper) to develop and maintain the Medikeeper website. Personal and health information collected via the website is stored by Medikeeper on its servers based in the United States of America. Medikeeper is bound to comply with HSS’s directions in relation to the security of information and takes all possible precautions to safeguard their data bases and information.
      3. Hard copy information that is not in circulation for process reasons is stored in a compactus; and
      4. Information older that one year is archived and stored at a secure off-site location.
    3. Home Support Services will take reasonable steps to destroy or permanently de-identify information if it is no longer needed for any purpose for which the information may be used or disclosed, by undertaking routine reviews the currency of client lists and matters to determine when such information is no longer needed.
    4. Other than as outlined in clause 4.2(b) of this Privacy Policy, Home Support Services will not disclose any personal information to overseas recipients.
  1. Openness
    1. Home Support Services will make this Privacy Policy document available to anyone who requests it.
    2. On request by the client, Home Support Services will take reasonable steps to let the client know what sort of information it holds about them, for what purposes, and how it collects, holds, uses and disclosures that information.
  1. Access to Information
    1. The client has a right to access any record that contains information that is personal to them (a Personal Record) free of charge. There may be some situations where access to a Personal Record may be withheld by Home Support Services; for example, where access would pose a serious threat to the life or health of any person or where the request is frivolous or vexatious.
    2. The client may request access to a Personal Record in writing. This request may be made by letter or email to the Privacy Officer referred to in clause 9 of this Privacy Policy.
    3. The client may seek assistance in making request for access to a Personal Record. If a Home Support Services member of staff writes the request on the client’s behalf they may be required to sign the request.
    4. Upon receipt of a request for access to a Personal Record, Home Support Services endeavours, where practicable to have the Personal Record available for collection or delivered to the client within 48 hours. The client will be required to have photo identification available (i.e. drivers licence, passport) at time of receipt of personal record as proof of identity. A small fee will be charged for collating personal records.
  1. Correction on Information
    1. If the client is able to establish that information is not accurate complete and up-to-date, Home Support Services will take reasonable steps to correct the information so that it is accurate complete and up-to-date.
    2. Home Support Services will also immediately correct any information it identifies as being inaccurate, out of date, incomplete, irrelevant or misleading.
  1. Complaints Concerning Information
    1. If the client wishes to complain about the manner in which Home Support Services handles or has handled information they may do so.
    2. The client is able to lodge their complaint in person, by phone, by email or in writing.
    3. Home Support Services staff who receive a complaint (verbal or in writing) while providing on-site client services are obliged to refer this complaint to the Home Support Services Complaints Office so that the complaint can be handled in accordance with the Home Support Services’ complaint policy. A copy of Home Support Services’ complaints policy will be made available upon request.
    4. If a complaint is made verbally to a staff member, the staff member will:
      1. Confirm with the client whether they wish to make the complaint;
      2. Record of the complaint; and
      3. Submit the complaint to a Complaints Officer so that the complaint can be handled in accordance with Home Support Services’ complaint policy.
  1. Policy Officer

 A Privacy Officer will be nominated by Home Support Services to undertake any such tasks required by this Privacy Policy including the routine review of the compliance by Home Support Services of this Privacy Policy and the Privacy Act 1988 as amended by the Privacy Amendment (Enhancing Privacy Protection) Act 2012.

 

References:

Privacy Amendment (Enhancing Privacy protection) Act 2012, which amends the Privacy Act 1988

Australian Privacy Principles (APPs), March 2014

Privacy fact sheet 17 – Australian Privacy Principles