Vital Home Health Services (VHHS) values and respects the privacy of the people we deal with. VHHS is committed to protecting your privacy and complying with the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) (Privacy Act), the Privacy and Personal Information Protection Act 1998 (NSW), the Australian Privacy Principles (APPs), any contractual obligations and statutory requirements.
All Directors, Committee members, staff, consultants and volunteers of VHHS must adopt practices and actions to ensure compliance with this policy. Any practice or action which results in a deviation to this policy must be reported to the responsible Executive/Privacy officer.
We take reasonable steps to implement practices, procedures and systems that will ensure we comply with Australian Privacy Laws and to deal with related enquiries and complaints, including mandatory training for all our staff.
What is personal information?
“Personal information” means any information or opinion, whether true or not, and whether recorded in a material form or not, about an identified individual or an individual who is reasonably identifiable. In general terms, this includes information or an opinion that personally identifies you either directly (e.g. your name) or indirectly.
What personal information do we collect?
The personal information VHHS collects about you depends on the nature of your dealings with us or what you choose to share with us.
The personal information we collect about you may include:
● Mailing or street address;
● Date of birth;
● Occupation or qualifications
● Email address;
● Phone number(s).
● Any information relating to you that you provide to us directly or indirectly through our websites or online presence.
How do we collect your personal information?
VHHS collects your personal information directly from you when you:
● Interact with us over the phone;
● Interact with us in person;
● Interact with us online; e.g email, website forms or online presence
● Participate in surveys or questionnaires;
● Attend a VHHS event;
● Subscribe to our mailing list;
● Apply for a position with us as an employee, contractor or volunteer;
● During correspondence between you and out representatives.
Collecting personal information from third parties
VHHS may also collect your personal information from third parties, for example from treating medical practitioners, allied health professionals, hospitals, clinics, governing or funding bodies for services we provide. We collect your personal information from these third parties so that VHHS can safely provide adequate care and services.
How do we use your personal information?
Under certain circumstances, VHHS may need to collect sensitive information about you. This might include any information or opinion about your racial or ethnic origin, gender and health information. If we collect your sensitive information, we will do so only with your consent, if it is necessary to prevent a serious and imminent threat to life or health, or as otherwise required or authorised by law, and we take appropriate measures to protect the security of your information.
If you choose to not provide us with your personal information, we will not be able to provide you with our services or otherwise interact with you. There are limited circumstances where you can deal with us anonymously and you will be advised where this is reasonably necessary and possible.
We collect, hold, use and disclose your personal information so that we can provide services to our clients and perform our business activities and functions. These purposes include to:
● Provide you with information, care or services that you request from us;
● Deliver to you a more personalised experience and service offering;
● Provide culturally sensitive and aware services
● To cater to, respect and be sensitive to personal preferences and ones identity.
● improve the quality of the services we offer;
● internal administrative purposes;
● Processing, addressing and responding to any complaint submitted;
● Marketing and research purposes;
● Maintaining contact information, ensuring they are up to date and current;
Disclosure of personal information
VHHS may disclose client Personal Information to our employees, volunteers, suppliers, third party contractors and service providers that help us to operate our business and to deliver services to clients. This personal information may include without limitation; IT service providers, medical and other health providers, government and non-government agencies, payment system operators, couriers, solicitors, business advisors and referral services (including to enable the referral service to verify eligibility for funded services).
When VHHS provides Personal Information to consultants who perform services on our behalf, we require those consultants to protect Personal Information as diligently as we do. Strict contractual and other quality assurance measures are used to ensure Personal Information is protected.
Transfer of personal information overseas
VHHS does not store any of your confidential material overseas.
VHHS takes reasonable steps to protect Personal Information that we hold from misuse, interference, loss or unauthorised access or disclosure. Every effort will be made by VHHS to ensure data is protected from unauthorised access.
Records are all computerised with access limited to appropriate staff. Electronic records are held on a password protected secure database. Any paper files are kept securely in a locked cabinet until a time that they are scanned to our servers. Once actioned, documents are then either shredded or put in locked confidential waste bin that is destroyed by an authorised business.
Retention and destruction practices
In accordance with health information protection laws, VHHS is required to retain health information for 7 years after the last occasion on which we provided a health service to an individual, except where the information was collected while the individual was under 18 (in which case, we will keep the records until the individual has reached 25 years of age).
Other personal information will only be kept for as long as it is needed for any purpose for which it was collected, or otherwise if it is part of a Commonwealth record or is required to be retained under Australian law or by a court or tribunal. All personal information which is no longer needed or required by law to be retained will be properly de-identified and/or destroyed.
How do we protect your personal information?
VHHS will take reasonable steps to ensure that the personal information that we hold about you is kept confidential and secure, including by:
● Having a robust physical security of our premises and databases / records;
● Taking measures to restrict access to only personnel who need that personal information to effectively provide services to you;
● Having technological measures in place (for example, anti-virus software, firewalls etc);
Website and Online activity
Despite all precautions we take to protect your personal information, as our websites are linked to the Internet, and the Internet is inherently unsecure, we cannot provide any assurance regarding the security of any transmission of information you communicate to us online. We also cannot guarantee that the information you supply will not be intercepted while being transmitted over the internet. Accordingly, any personal information or other information which you transmit to us online is transmitted at your own risk.
VHHS may send you direct marketing communications, materials and information about our services, opportunities, or events that we consider may be of interest to you if you have requested or consented to receive such communications.
These communications may be sent in various forms, including mail, SMS, fax and email, in accordance with applicable marketing laws, such as the Australian Spam Act 2003 (Cth). You consent to us sending you those direct marketing communications by any of those methods. If you indicate a preference for a method of communication, we will endeavour to use that method whenever practical to do so.
You may opt-out of receiving marketing communications from us at any time by following the instructions to “unsubscribe” set out in the relevant communication or by contacting us using the details set out in the “contact us” section of the website
How to access and correct your personal information
If you wish to make a request to access and / or correct the personal information VHHS holds about you, you should make a request by contacting us. The request must be in writing and addressed to our Privacy Officer. We will treat your request confidentially and will usually respond within 14 days.
We endeavour to provide access to personal information in the manner requested by you so long as it is reasonable and practicable to do so (considerations include volume and nature of the information and/or any special requirements).
Unfortunately, there may be circumstances where VHHS cannot grant you access to your personal information. For example, we may need to refuse access where we reasonably believe that granting access would pose a serious threat to the life, health or safety of an individual or to public health and safety, have an unreasonable impact on the privacy of another individual or if it would result in a breach of confidentiality. If that happens, we will give you written reasons for any refusal.
Where we refuse you access to your personal information on the ground that it would present a serious threat to you or an individual’s life or health then in circumstances we may provide access through an intermediary (such as a treating medical practitioner) on your request which may include allowing the intermediary to consider whether access should be provided.
If you believe that the personal information we hold about you is incorrect, incomplete, outdated or inaccurate, then you may request VHHS to amend it. We will consider if the information requires amendment. If we agree to correct the information then, where reasonably practicable, we will notify you of the changes that we have made. If we do not agree that there are grounds for amendment then we will notify you of the reasons for our refusal (to the extent that it is reasonable to do so) and of any available avenues for you to complain about the refusal. We will also add a note to the personal information stating that you disagree with it.
Links to third party sites
The VHHS website may contain links to websites operated by third parties. If you access a third party website through our website, personal information may be collected by that third party website. We make no representations or warranties in relation to the privacy practices of any third party provider or website and we are not responsible for the privacy policies or the content of any third party provider or website. Third party providers / websites are responsible for informing you about their own privacy practices and we encourage you to read their privacy policies.
Inquiries and complaints
If you have any questions, concerns or a complaint regarding the treatment of your privacy or a possible breach of your privacy, please contact the VHHS Privacy Officer. We will treat your request or complaint confidentially. We will contact you within a reasonable time after receipt of your complaint to discuss your concerns and outline options regarding how they may be resolved. We will aim to resolve your complaint in a timely and appropriate manner.
Note we may require proof of your identity and full details of your request before we can process your complaint. Please allow up to 28 days for VHHS to respond to your complaint. It will not always be possible to resolve a complaint to everyone’s satisfaction. If you are not satisfied with VHHS’s response to a complaint, you have the right to contact the applicable regulator such as the Office of Australian Information Commissioner at www.oaic.gov.au to lodge a complaint.
How to contact us
If you have a question or concern in relation to VHHS handling of your personal information or this Policy, you can contact us for assistance as follows:
Via the contact us form on: https://vitalhomehealth.com.au/contact-us/
55 Tennyson Road, Greenacre, 2190, NSW
Attention: Vital Home Health Services Privacy Officer