Eyewear Youwear is committed to protecting and preserving the privacy rights of our patients. Eyewear Youwear collects information from our patients in the course of providing optometry services and products.
Eyewear Youwear collects the personal information from our clients, patients and other individuals. All personal information is collected by lawful and fair means. Personal information can be collected in different ways, such as:
- when a client/customer/other individual visits our store for an eye test;
- where Eyewear Youwear communicates with a client/customer/other individual by telephone, mail, or email;
- when a client/customer/other individual submits a form or provides information when accessing our products and services, and
- when an individual applies for a job at Eyewear Youwear.
The specific uses to which Eyewear Youwear puts patients’ personal information includes treating, coordinating and implementing management plans for the treatment of eye care or related health care needs. Often most personal information is collected from the patient.
The type of information Eyewear Youwear collects about a client/customer/other individual includes:
- our clients/patients (including prospective clients/patients): name, date of birth, contact details, referrals, clinical history and other relevant circumstances, payment and related information (Medicare and other health identifiers, Department of Veterans’ Affairs, workers compensation, transport accident compensation, private health insurance and billing details) and other information necessary to provide our products and services;
- referring practitioners: name, contact details, information relevant to providing product and services to referred clients;
- our contractors, service providers and business associates: name, contact details and information relevant to obtaining third party services or providing our services, and
- job applicants: name, contact details, job applications, references and other information relevant to assessing applicants.
At times patient information is acquired through a third party, such as Medicare, Department of Veterans Affairs or a health fund. This information only relates to eligibility for services provided by those bodies, and is not used except in office, for third party billing procedures.
Use and Disclosure of information
Eyewear Youwear will use personal information to provide eye care related services or products. Eyewear Youwear may disclose personal information about patients to third parties for the purpose for which that information was collected and also for related purposes that could reasonably be expected by the patient:
- to provide you with eye care and eyewear goods and services
- to perform authorised financial transactions
- to provide (with your consent) your personal information to another health care practitioner, for example, when you are referred to a specialist for treatment
- to provide your personal details to Medicare to the extent that is necessary for Medicare benefits to be claimed
- to inform you, in circumstances where you might reasonably expect, and where you have not opted out from such receiving such information, about products or services we believe would benefit or be of interest to you
- to conduct market research and marketing our products or services to you more generally (where you have consented to this)
- to investigate and resolve complaints concerning the provision of goods or services;
- to allow you to participate in interactive features of our services, including on social media, when you choose to do so
- to comply with legislative requirements and provisions.
Eyewear Youwear may disclose the personal information collected from you to:
- assist with the delivery of goods or services (including physical delivery)
- third parties who act on our behalf (such as mail houses, health providers) provided that the primary use is permitted.
Clinically relevant patient information may be shared with other relevant health care practitioners for example, a referral to an ophthalmologist or General Practitioner with the patients consent. Patient information may also be used to contact the patient to inform them about the need for a check‐up or practice relocation. A patient may elect not to be contacted in this matter if they so wish.
Information may also be required to be released to courts, tribunals or regulatory authorities as agreed or authorised by law. In most cases this will require a court to order the release of the information, although information may also be released when the optometrist believes that this is necessary to prevent a serious and imminent threat to a person’s life, health or safety, or to public health and safety. Some information, such as the patient’s identity and the type of consultation provided, may be released in order to allow Medicare benefits to be claimed. Commonwealth legislation also allows records to be inspected by representatives of the Medicare Australia in order to investigate whether Medicare benefits have been paid appropriately.
Eyewear Youwear is unlikely to disclose personal information to an overseas recipient with the exception of such matters that arise in the course of providing eye care with the consent of the patient. An example would be the purchase of a specialty optical appliance for a patient that is unavailable in Australia.
Eyewear Youwear will take reasonable steps to ensure that the personal information we collect from patients is accurate, complete and up-to-date. When a patient informs Eyewear Youwear of any inaccuracy, it will be corrected as soon as possible.
Eyewear Youwear will take all reasonable steps to ensure that the information we hold about a patient is protected from misuse, loss and unauthorised access, modification or disclosure.
Patient records are electronically stored and password protected. The only people who have access to patient records are the optometrists involved in the care of the patient, and practice staff, who need access for purposes such as optical dispensing and billing. No unauthorised persons are permitted to access the records. Practice staff are bound by confidentiality clauses in the terms of their employment.
Eyewear Youwear will also take reasonable steps to destroy information held about a patient once that information is no longer required, is not contained in a public record or Eyewear Youwear is required to maintain under an Australia Law or court order.
Access to and correction of personal information
Patients may request access to, and ask Eyewear Youwear to make corrections to, the personal information that Eyewear Youwear holds about them.
Eyewear Youwear will, on request, provide a patient with access to his or her personal information, unless there is an exception which applies under relevant privacy laws. If we refuse to provide access to the information, we will provide reasons for the refusal and inform the patient of any exceptions relied upon.
A suitable time will be arranged for a viewing, with an optometrist available to interpret the information, or explain any terms used. A fee may be charged for this service. A response to a question for access must be provided within a reasonable time (45 days in NSW).
Under some circumstances, Eyewear Youwear may refuse to provide access to the information held about a patient. This will only occur where releasing the information would pose a serious threat to the health of the patient or another person, would unreasonably impact on the privacy of another person, would interfere in legal investigations or other proceedings, or would otherwise be illegal. The physical/electronic record and the intellectual property contained in it remain the property of Eyewear Youwear at all times.
Eyewear Youwear will not adopt, use or disclose any identifier assigned to a member by a government agency, except where required by law. Medicare numbers will only be used for the purposes of claiming Medicare benefits.
It is a patient’s right to be dealt with anonymously, provided that it is lawful and practicable. Eyewear Youwear will try to accommodate this wherever possible. However, it may not be possible for Eyewear Youwear to provide optimal services without access to a patient’s personal information.
Transborder data flows
Eyewear Youwear will not transfer data about the patient to a recipient in a foreign country unless the data will receive at least the same level of protection as in Australia, unless the patient gives their permission for the practice to do so.
Eyewear Youwear will not collect sensitive information about the patient without the patient’s consent, except where collecting such information is required by law, or where the patient (or their representative) cannot give consent and the information is needed to provide a health service to the patient or to reduce a threat to the life or health of another person.
‘Sensitive information’ is defined as information about a person’s health, their racial or ethnic origin, their political, religious or philosophical beliefs and affiliations, their membership in professional or trade associations or unions, their sexual preferences or practices, or their criminal record.
Requests, Complaints or Questions
If a patient wishes to gain access to his or her personal information, make a complaint about a breach of his or her privacy or have any questions on how his or her personal information is collected or used, the patient can forward his or her request, complaint or question to the address below:
Shop 5, 285A Crown St Surry Hills NSW 2010
(02) 9267 4099
Eyewear Youwear will respond to a patient’s request, complaint or question within a reasonable time.
Patients may also make a complaint to the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC) about the handling of their personal information as covered by the Privacy Act. Information on how to made a complaint to the OAIC can be found at www.oaic.gov.au or 1300 363 992 or by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.