The Melbourne Holistic Health Group (MHHG) is committed to protecting the privacy of the personal information we record and any additional information that directly or indirectly identifies a person, such that:
- We collect and handle personal information for the purposes of providing clinical services to our clients.
- In accordance with our responsibilities, the services and functions we provide relate primarily to the area of health care.
- We recognise that the nature of these services means that much of the information we handle is particularly sensitive.
- We recognise the essential right of individuals to have their information handled in a manner they would reasonably expect, such that it is protected on the one hand, and made accessible to them on the other. Release of client information may only occur with the written consent of the client and the releasing practitioner.
- These privacy values are reflected in and supported by our collaborative relationships, professional integrity, quality, responsibility and client focus.
- We are bound by the Victorian privacy laws, the Information Privacy Act 2000 and the Health Records Act 2001, as well as other laws which impose specific obligations in regard to handling information.
- Any student or intern observing consultations at the clinic will be bound by the same code of privacy as all practitioners and staff. In addition, they will not identify any client by name in notes relating to clinical observation.
- We will ensure that when contacting clients via the telephone, staff will only identify the call is from MHHG when speaking directly to the client, otherwise the call will be identified as a personal call.
- We will ask permission of our new client's to telephone them two days before their scheduled appointment to reconfirm their booking.
- Any electronic banking information provided to MHHG will remain private and appropriate security will be in place to ensure this information will not be accessible to any party other than MHHG.
- We have adopted the respective Privacy Principles contained in the Victorian privacy laws as minimum standards in relation to handling personal information. In broad terms this means that we:
- collect only information which we need for a specified primary purpose
- ensure that the person knows why we collect it and how we will handle it
- use and disclose the information only for the primary or a directly related purpose, or for another purpose with the person's consent (unless otherwise authorised by law)
- store it securely, protecting it from unauthorised access
- retain it for the period authorised by the Public Records Act 1973
- provide the person with access to their own information, and the right to seek its collection. For information in our possession, this right is available through the Freedom of Information Act 1982.
More information on the Privacy Act, 2001 (including the Health Records Act) can be found at http://www.privacy.gov.au/law/act