IWK

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Confidentiality and Your Personal Health Information

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Confidentiality and Your Health Record

At your first appointment, your clinician will explain to you about how we keep your personal information confidential, why we keep it confidential and under what circumstances we would break confidentiality.

Your clinician or team of clinicians at the IWK will keep a record of the care that is given to you. Clinicians also keep a record when you give information that is relevant to your care. This is kept in your health record. This health record is kept confidential. This means that we cannot release this information to anyone outside the IWK Health Centre unless you/your child give written consent.

The IWK provides treatment updates and assessment reports to your family doctor, because they are part of the circle of care involved in your treatment.  If you do not want your family doctor to receive this information, you can tell your clinician when you discuss consent to treatment on your first visit.

Who else at the IWK knows about my health information?

Your clinician might work with other clinicians to provide care to you/your child. They may need to consult with another clinician on the treatment options or resources. There may also be students and residents working with your clinician and helping with your care.  All health care providers, students and residents must keep your health information confidential.

Are there exceptions to confidentiality?

YES.  If we have reason to believe that you/your child is in danger of being hurt, self-harming or hurting someone else.  If the clinician believes this, they are ethically and legally required to tell the appropriate authorities.

In some cases, the IWK may be required by law to disclosed confidential information if we are served with a court order.

If youth can consent on their own to treatment, they may choose to keep what they tell the clinician private from their parents. However, youth must understand there are some exceptions to this. The clinician must tell parents/legal guardians or appropriate authorities if the youth is in danger of being hurt, self-harming, or hurting someone else.