What is this Policy all about?
Waratah Dental is committed to providing quality services to you and this policy outlines our ongoing obligations to you in respect of how we manage your Personal Information.
We have adopted the Australian Privacy Principles (APPs) contained in the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) (the Privacy Act). The NPPs govern the way in which we collect, use, disclose, store, secure and dispose of your Personal Information.
The Privacy Act 1988 (Privacy Act) has 13 Australian Privacy Principles (APP) relating to the handling of personal information. Personal information is any information or an opinion that identifies you or could identify you and includes information about your health. Unless indicated otherwise:
- “Information” in this Policy refers to your personal and health information as defined in the Privacy Act;
- “Waratah Dental”, “we”, “our” and “us” are the dental practices that trade under the “Waratah dental” and include the service providers that carry on business from the dental practices; and
- “Dental practitioner” includes dentists, dental hygienists, oral health therapists, dental technicians, dental prosthetists and dental therapists.
This Policy outlines how we manage your information.
Notifying patients about their rights
Waratah Dental will always endeavour to advise patients about their rights and the way our practice operates. Part of the process of providing this information to patients and/or carers is providing access to our practice Charter of Patient Rights.
All staff will assist patients to understand their patient rights and the way our practice operates. It is the responsibility of staff to proactively identify those patients who may be ‘at risk’ of not understanding their healthcare rights and to consult the dental practitioner if further guidance is needed.
You can read the full version of the Charter of Healthcare Rights here:
Why do we manage your information?
We collect your Personal Information for the primary purpose of providing our dental services to you, providing information to our clients and marketing. We may also use your Personal Information for secondary purposes closely related to the primary purpose, in circumstances where you would reasonably expect such use or disclosure. You may unsubscribe from our mailing/marketing lists at any time by contacting us in writing.
When we collect Personal Information we will, where appropriate and where possible, explain to you why we are collecting the information and how we plan to use it.
What personal information do we collect?
Personal Information is information or an opinion that identifies an individual. The types of information that we collect include:
- Name and contact details, date of birth, health insurance details, medical history, and details about your current health and prescriptions/medications;
- Medicare information and information from other bodies that may fund your dental care;
- Notes taken by dental practitioners about your symptoms, medical history and dental health, and dental practitioner’s observations and opinions about your dental health;
- Your patient file held by us, as well as your patient file held by other dental practices;
- Insurance claims, such as motor vehicle and workers’ compensation;
- Credit card and other payment details;
- Video and photographs in which you can be reasonably identified;
- Communications sent or received by you or us which contains your information; and
- Any reports associated with the provision of dental services.
How do we collect your information?
We collect your information in a number of ways, including when you:
- Attend our dental practices;
- Complete electronic and hard copy forms, including Medical/Dental History Forms;
- Communicate with our employees or dental practitioners in the course of dental services;
- Contact us by phone, e-mail or other communication medium;
- Provide written consent for us to collect your information from other dental practitioners.
We may also collect your information from third parties such as other dental practitioners who are treating or have previously treated you, other health practitioners, health insurance providers, Medicare, and government bodies. In particular circumstances, we may collect your information from a legal guardian or other person who has the authority to do so.
How do we use and disclose your information?
Your Personal Information may be disclosed in a number of circumstances including the following:
- Create, access, read and maintain your patient file;
- Devise a treatment plan for you;
- Respond to your inquiries through any communication medium, including our website and social media tools;
- Update your information, such as contact details, and inform other service providers of your updated information;
- When we refer you to another service provider (e.g. specialist or laboratory);
- Prepare invoices, process payments and institute debt recovery procedures;
- In the course of our management, information technology, marketing, administrative, funding, complaint-handling, planning, evaluation, quality assurance and audit activities;
- Access and process insurance claims (including private health) and Medicare claims;
- Contact you in relation to dental services provided, and to be provided, by us;
- Finalise a dental appointment for you;
- Provide general information about our dental practices and the services we provide;
- If authorised or required under an Australian law or a court/tribunal order; and
- When a document, signed by you, is received by us from a dental practitioner requesting your patient records.
We may disclose your information to parties that are associated with our provision of dental services including: our employees; other health service providers which are involved with your dental treatment; professional advisors (e.g. lawyers, insurers, accountants, dental specialists); IT service providers; emergency contacts; government bodies; and other third parties with your consent (express or implied). It is unlikely that we will disclose your information to overseas recipients.
How is my information protected?
Your Personal Information is stored in a manner that reasonably protects it from misuse and loss and from unauthorized access, modification or disclosure.
When your Personal Information is no longer needed for the purpose for which it was obtained, we will take reasonable steps to destroy or permanently de-identify your Personal Information. However, most of the Personal Information is or will be stored in client files which will be kept by us for a minimum of 7 years.
We cannot guarantee the security of your information when you use our website and social media tools, as the internet is not a secure vehicle for transmitting information. If you have any concerns about disclosing your information over the internet but have an inquiry about our dental services, please contact us via e-mail, telephone, post or fax using the Waratah Dental Contact Details below.
How can I access my information?
You may access the Personal Information we hold about you and to update and/or correct it, subject to certain exceptions. If you wish to access your Personal Information, please contact us in writing as well as evidence verifying your identity or that you have authority to request access (e.g. legal guardian). Waratah Dental will not charge any fee for your access request but may charge an administrative fee for providing a copy of your Personal Information.
How can I correct my information?
It is an important to us that your Personal Information is up to date. Waratah Dental will take reasonable steps to make sure that your Personal Information is accurate, complete and up-to-date. If you find that the information we have is not up to date or is inaccurate, please advise us as soon as practicable so we can update our records and ensure we can continue to provide quality services to you.
How can you contact us about a concern related to privacy?
There are a number of ways that you can contact us if you have any questions, concerns or a complaint about the matters covered in this Policy or how we handle your information. A matter includes if you disagree with a decision made by us concerning the privacy of your information, such as a refusal to correct or provide access to your information. Unless there are exceptional circumstances, we will take reasonable steps to respond to you within 30 days of receipt.
If you are not satisfied with our response to your complaint, you may contact the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (https://www.oaic.gov.au)
Waratah Dental Contact Details:
Phone: (02) 6351 3520
Fax: (02) 6351 3570
Post: PO Box 770 Lithgow NSW 2790