What information does Central X-ray and Ultrasound collect?
Central X-ray and Ultrasound collects both personal and health information. Your name, date of birth, address and Health Card Number are examples of personal information.
Why does Central X-ray and Ultrasound need this information?
The information we collect from you is used:
- To provide you with quality health care and follow-up care in the community. We need your information to make sure we can make the appropriate diagnosis and provide treatment.
- To comply with the law, e.g.:
- The law requires healthcare institutes to disclose your personal health information if there is a legal investigation.
We will only collect, use or disclose your personal health information outside your circle of care with your express consent or in accordance with PHIPA. Central X-ray and Ultrasound provides a more detailed outline to its clients about what type of personal health information will be collected as part of providing health care services to you.
How does Central X-ray and Ultrasound protect my information?
A few of the ways that we strive to protect both your personal information and your personal health information are by:
- Educating our staff, physicians, volunteers and students on the importance of respecting your privacy rights and about their obligations to maintain confidentiality.
- Applying additional security measures to all electronic health records; e.g., user- specific log in names and passwords, encryption requirements, firewall and antivirus software.
All your medical images are stored at a secure facility that requires strict biometric identification to access the facility. Only authorized staff members have access to this facility. We do not store or transfer Information outside Ontario.
Does Central X-ray and Ultrasound share my information with anyone?
We share some or all your information with:
- Health care providers at other hospitals, nursing homes or other health care agencies who need information for ongoing care in the community.
- Agencies that fund Central X-ray and Ultrasound, e.g. OHIP, extended health insurance companies, Workplace Safety and Insurance Board, Ministry of Health.
Other agencies to whom we are required by law to provide information, e.g. for public health surveillance.
As part of the Diagnostic Imaging repository (DI-r), we also share your images with all the hospitals in our Local Health Integration Network (LHIN) that includes 98 healthcare organizations in the following Ontario regions: North York, York region and South Simcoe and Northern York region. The goal of eHealth Ontario is to eventually have all of Ontario to be connected to a common repository to better serve your healthcare needs.
Will Central X-ray and Ultrasound disclose my health information to outside companies or to my employer?
Unless the disclosure is permitted or required by law, Central X-ray and Ultrasound requires your written permission or a court order to disclose health information to any organization or person not directly involved with the provision of your care.
Where is my health information stored and for how long?
Only authorized staff members have access to this facility Central X-ray and Ultrasound is legally required to keep a patient’s health record for at least 10 years past the date of the last admission. There are situations, e.g. health records of children, where Central X-ray and Ultrasound is required to keep a record longer.
What if some of the information in my health record is incorrect?
Central X-ray and Ultrasound only use the information that is on your OHIP card. If this information is incorrect, i.e. incorrect spelling of your name, or date of birth, please contact service Ontario to take the necessary steps to correct your information.
Can my family see my health information?
Although you have the right to access your health record, this right does not automatically extend to family members and/or friends. If you provide written authorization for a friend or family member to see your record, then the friend/family member may access the part(s) that you have consented to let them see.
What if I am unable to give consent to release my health information?
Like consenting to treatment, if you are unable to give consent for access, use and/or disclosure of your health information, the consent decision falls to the appointed substitute decision maker, such as a spouse, parent or guardian.
Will my family and friends be able to call in to get information about me over the phone?
We do not provide information over the phone because we have no way to verify who is calling and what their relationship is to you.
Can all staff access my health information?
The only persons whom Central X-ray and Ultrasound authorizes to access a patient record are the staff and radiologists involved in a patient’s care, or staff who need information from a patient record to conduct the business of Central X-ray and Ultrasound e.g., the Finance department staff that sends a bill to OHIP. All staff are bound Central X-ray and Ultrasound policies and practices related to privacy and confidentiality. These policies aim to ensure that staff only access information on a need-to-know basis. Regulated Health Professionals are also bound by privacy and confidentiality requirements from their professional associations.
I have noticed that many areas of the clinic are open, and I can sometimes overhear staff talking to patients and family about health information. Is this not a breach of patient privacy?
Despite the pressures of an acute-care clinic setting, staff makes every effort to discuss health information privately.
Can my family physician access my health information?
Central X-ray and Ultrasound sends information to your family physician that is listed in your requisition. We will provide additional information to your family physician if requested and unless you tell us otherwise.