The Health Care Consumers Association has provided us with the following information.
This year, all Australians with a Medicare or Veterans Affairs Card will get a My Health Record unless they choose not to. During the opt out period (16 July – 15 October 2018) individuals who do not want a record will be able to opt out by visiting the My Health Record website or by calling 1800 723 471 for phone based assistance.
My Health Record is an individual’s online summary of key health information and can be viewed safely and securely anywhere at any time with connection to the internet.
Using My Health Record, women and their medical practitioners will have access to information including shared health summaries, prescribed and dispensed medicines, and hospital discharge summaries. My Health Record can list results from pathology and imaging reports such as blood tests and x-rays, organ donation choices and immunisation register information.
For many women, privacy and security of their medical information is understandably of paramount importance. My Health Record protects data using multi-layered safeguards including encryption, firewalls and secure logins. Access control settings can be adjusted separately for individuals, healthcare providers and documents by setting up to three different access codes.
Audit logging means women can see which provider has accessed their documents and when. Setting up SMS notifications means an email or text is sent any time a new healthcare provider accesses an individual’s My Health Record, including in an emergency.
As women are often carers to their parents and their children, it’s important to know they can be representatives on their family members’ My Health Records also. Children and teenagers automatically have their parent or registered guardian as their Authorised Representative of their My Health Record if they are on the same Medicare card. To access a child’s record, a mother just has to link them through their myGov account. To become a Nominated Representative of an elderly parent, permission needs to be provided via the My Health Record website or through written documentation.
When a My Health Record is activated it’s empty. The individual has the choice to add two years of Medicare data but a person’s medical history will not automatically be uploaded. Going to a doctor and asking for a shared health summary to be uploaded will mean a summary of an individual’s past medical details will be added only if they choose it to be.
While there is legislative standing consent for a health practitioner to access a My Health Record while treating a patient, the healthcare consumer can request a document not be uploaded if they choose. They can also delete documents at any time. However these will not be able to be accessed again.