This policy outlines how we protect the personal information we collect about you. Personal information is any identifying information about you, including your physical and fertility health. We value patient privacy and are committed to being accountable for how we treat your personal information. Everyone working for this office is required to adhere to the protections described in this policy.
This policy was developed in compliance with the British Columbia Personal Information Protection Act (PIPA). PIPA sets out rules for how organizations such as our office can collect, use, disclose, store and retain your personal information. If you have any questions regarding our privacy practices, please contact your physician or one of our staff.
Collection, Use and Disclosure of Personal Information
What personal information do we collect?
We collect the following personal information:
- Identification and contact information (name, address, date of birth, telephone number, emergency contact, etc.)
- Billing information (provincial plan and/or private insurer)
- Health information (symptoms, diagnosis, medical history, test results, reports and treatment, record of allergies, prescriptions, etc.)
Why do we collect your personal information?
We collect your personal information for the purposes of identifying you, providing you with care, administering the services that we provide and communicating with you. We collect only the information that is required to fulfill those purposes. We do not collect any other information, or allow information to be used for other purposes, without your express (i.e., verbal, written or electronic) consent - except where authorized to do so by law.
How can records be accessed?
You have the right to access your record in a timely manner. You may request a copy of your record, for a minimal fee. If you wish to view the original record, one of our staff must be present to maintain the integrity of the record, and a minimal fee may be charged for this access. Patient requests for access to your medical record can be made verbally or in writing to your physician or the staff (see office address at top of Policy).
Are there limitations on access?
In extremely rare circumstances you may be denied access to your records, for example if providing access would create a significant risk to you or to another person.
What if the records are not accurate?
We make every effort to ensure that all of your information is recorded accurately. If an inaccuracy is identified, you can request that the information be corrected, and a note will be made to reflect this on your file.
How secure is your personal information?
Safeguards are in place to protect the security of your information. These safeguards include a combination of physical, technological and administrative security measures that are appropriate to the sensitivity of the information. These safeguards are aimed at protecting personal information against loss or theft, as well as unauthorized access, disclosure, copying, use or modification.
What is our communications policy?
We protect personal information regardless of the format. Specific procedures are in place for communicating by phone, email, fax, and post/courier.
How long do we keep personal information?
We retain patient records for a minimum period of 16 years, or as otherwise required by law and professional regulations.
How do we dispose of information when it is no longer required?
When information is no longer required, it is destroyed in an irreversible and secure manner, in accordance with set procedures of the College of Physicians and Surgeons of BC that govern the storage and destruction of personal information.
What personal information is collected and how is it used?
When a user visits the OFC website (www.olivefertility.com), the web server automatically collects a limited amount of information essential for the operation and security of the website. Some of this information (e.g. browser type) does not identify the user, while other information, such as an IP address, may identify the user.
There are instances in which a user may elect to provide the OFC with personal information. For example, if a user fills out a feedback or request form or sends the OFC an email, s/he is transmitting the information that appears in the form or the message. This submission will typically include information such as the user's name, mailing address, email address, the kind of request s/he is making, and any other information necessary to fulfill the request. A user never transmits identifying information that s/he does not enter directly. Personal information cannot be collected unless the user specifically elects to send it to the OFC.
Any personal information the OFC may collect via its website is collected in compliance with sections 26 of the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act, RSBC 1996, c.165. The OFC collects only what is necessary for the operation and security of its website. If the OFC uses that information, it is only for the purpose for which it was collected or for a use consistent with that purpose. Further, the OFC retains information only for as long as necessary to fulfill the purpose for which it was collected. The OFC does not disclose any personally identifiable user information to other organizations or individuals, except as required by law.
How is personal information protected?
The OFC website has an SSL certificate, the standard security technology for establishing an encrypted link between a web server and a browser and protecting data while in transit. When a user submits personally identifying information via a feedback or application form, that information is encrypted or scrambled by the user's browser before it is transmitted back to the OFC website. This encryption effectively prevents anyone from intercepting and reading any personal information about the user. Note that this encryption does not take place if the user sends the OFC an email directly; only when a web browser is used with one of the website’s forms. Security upgrades to the CMS are performed on a regular and on-going basis.
The private information collected may only be accessed by authorized clinic staff.
Commitment to Assist
We are committed to assisting you with any questions or concerns about how we collect, use, or disclose your personal information or how to obtain access to your personal information. If you have questions or concerns, please direct them to:
Olive Fertility Centre
300 – 555 West 12th Avenue
OFC Privacy Officer at firstname.lastname@example.org.