Information we collect
“Personal information” means information or an opinion about an identified individual, or an individual who is reasonably identifiable: whether the information or opinion is true or not; and whether the information or opinion is recorded in a material form or not.
“Sensitive information” is a sub-set of personal information and is given a higher level of protection under the APPs and includes health information.
At Southern Downs Dental, we collect the following Personal and Sensitive information for the sole purposes that are necessary to provide our services and carry on our dental practice.
Information we collect includes:
- Name and contact details
- Age, date-of-birth and gender
- Dental history including current oral health status and previous dental records
- Medical History including details about your current health and medications
- Health insurance and Medicare details, where applicable
- Financial information to the extent that we require it for payment of services
- Details of purchases made and professional services provided to you
How information may be collected
We may collect information directly from you (or from an authorised legal representative) in a number of ways including:
- Written questionnaire or secure iPad software
- Verbally, over the phone or in person with one of our staff or practitioners
- Via email or mail
- Via purchase of goods or services provided by us
We may collect information about you from third parties if you have given verbal or written consent to the provision of this information. Third parties may include
- Your health insurance provider or Medicare
- Other dentists, dental laboratories or dental specialists involved in your care
- Other health practitioners including your General Medical Practitioners, medical specialists and allied health practitioners.
How we use your personal information
Southern Downs Dental may use your information for any of the following purposes:
- To assess the safety and suitability of certain services and products we may provide to you
- To maintain and administer your patient files
- To quote, invoice and/or receipt you for services and products provided by us
- To process health insurance and Medicare claims
- To contact you for follow-up services, confirmation of appointments and check-up reminders
- To collect unpaid invoices
- To resolve complaints
- To comply with laws and regulations
- To send you information about our dental practice
Disclosure of your information to Third Parties
For the purposes of allowing Southern Downs Dental to manage and administer our services and products to you and to operate an efficient and sustainable business, we may be required to disclose your information to third parties. Southern Downs Dental is committed to ensuring that to the best of our knowledge, any third party will conduct themselves in accordance with Australian privacy law. Third parties may include the following under certain circumstances:
- In case of an emergency, we may be required to give your personal information to your nominated relatives, to paramedical and medical staff assisting in providing you with emergency care.
- To government and regulatory bodies (e.g. Medicare, Department of Veterans Affairs).
- To any person or entity acting on our behalf.
- To our IT support service E-Computing for the sole purpose of maintaining our IT systems.
- To our dental software provider Software of Excellence – EXACT for the purpose of maintaining our software and record-keeping and contacting our patients for recall purposes.
- Specific personal information (name, address, contact details and invoice amounts) may be disclosed to debt collection agencies engaged by us for the purpose of recouping unpaid costs following our provision of products and services to you.
- To dentists, dental laboratories, dental specialists and other health care professionals, for the purpose of seeking second opinion, a service or a referral, where you have consented for us to disclose this information.
- To health insurance companies and benefit providers to assist in the processing of a claim for the reimbursement or payment of all or part of the cost of dental treatment submitted by you or on your behalf.
- Where disclosure is required by law, e.g. compulsory notices from courts of law, tribunals or government agencies
- The release of your patient files to a dental practice or health service provider, nominated by you, for the purposes of providing comprehensive ongoing health care. In these cases, we will require that you complete a records release form, which you may obtain by contacting us using the contact details at the end of this document.
Handling and storage of Information
Southern Downs Dental provides ongoing training to our staff and practitioners to ensure that personal information that we hold about you is kept confidential. We keep both hard copy and electronic records of all personal information and take reasonable steps to secure these records against loss, misuse, unauthorised access/use, modification or disclosure. We take steps to ensure the regular back-up of electronic information.
Your personal information may be handled by our employees solely for the purposes of provision of dental services to you. We keep your information for as long as it is required to provide you with our services and products and to comply with legal requirements.
We, or our contracted data storage providers, may use servers, systems and cloud computing providers outside Australia. We do our best to ensure that our storage providers are required to comply with Australian Privacy Laws.
If we no longer require your personal information for any purpose, including legal purposes, we will take reasonable steps to securely destroy or de-identify your information.
Ensuring accuracy of information
Southern Downs Dental agrees to take reasonable steps to ensure that the information we collect from you is accurate, up-to-date and complete. These steps include:
- Maintaining and updating your personal information when you attend the practice and
- Amending information when you let us know that any of your information has changed.
Access to your personal information
You have the right to access the personal information that we hold about you. You can ask us for access to the information we hold about you at any time and we will always endeavour to meet your request within a reasonable time period and in the manner requested by you, if it is reasonable to do so. Our contact information can be found at the end of this document. Under some circumstances, access to certain information may be declined. These circumstances may include:
- If we no longer hold any personal information about you
- If the request is frivolous or vexatious
- If providing access would have an unreasonable impact on the privacy of others
- If providing access would be unlawful or if denying access is required by law
- If providing access would be likely to prejudice the prevention, detection, investigation and prosecution of possible unlawful activity
- Where access would pose a threat to the life or health of any individual
- If the information requested relates to existing or anticipated legal proceedings and would not normally be disclosed as part of those proceedings.
If we are unable to give you access to the information you have requested, we will give you written notice of the reasons for this decision when we respond to your request.
We may charge you a reasonable fee for access to some types of information requested by you. This charge will be limited to the cost of recouping our costs for providing you with the information and may include document retrieval, photocopy, the costs of duplication of x-rays and delivery costs to you.
Correcting your personal information
To enable us to provide you with the best service, it is important that any personal information we hold about you be accurate and up-to-date. We will take reasonable steps to ensure that your information is accurate, complete and up-to-date at the time of collecting using or disclosing it. If you believe any information we hold about you is inaccurate, incomplete or out-of-date, you should contact us in a timely manner to let us know so that we may amend your records.
Changes to our Privacy Statement
We may change our Privacy Statement at any time without notice.
Contacting Southern Downs Dental
- Our contact details are as follows:
- Contact Persons: Sarah Geisel, Phil Harmond or Diane Coy (Management team).
- Telephone: (07) 4661 1364
- Postal address: P.O. Box 109, Warwick QLD 4370
- Practice address: 49b Wood st, Warwick Qld 4370
- Email address: firstname.lastname@example.org