Privacy and confidentiality

Our office is dedicated to ensuring appropriate protection of personal information

Personal information and our office

We collect, hold, use and disclose personal information to carry out our functions as required by law. This may be over the phone, in meetings, by mail or by email.

Our privacy policy sets out how our staff (and any relevant consultants or contractors) protect any personal information collected or held by our office.

Personal information means information or opinion about an identified individual (or an individual who is reasonably identifiable). We often collect and handle personal and health information. Generally, this can include contact details and information about complaints.

We act to ensure that personal information is protected in a number of ways, including restricting access to personal information where appropriate as well as password protection and secure areas to store information.

By law, our staff (and anyone carrying out work on behalf of our office) must not record or share information that is acquired when working for the office unless:

  • the collection or sharing of the information is for the purposes of our office’s stated functions and services as outlined by law
  • consent has been given by the person or entity that provided the information.

Our office may use information it has collected for planning, funding, evaluation and improving our services and functions. Where appropriate and practicable, identifying details will be removed from any information used.

Our website may also record and log information about users of the website for statistical purposes and to help improve our services. Find out more about using our website.

Anyone can contact us to request access to the personal information we hold about them or to request corrections to their personal information.

Protective markings

One way that we safeguard information is by applying protective markings. Protective markings are visual sensitivity labels on public sector information. Protective markings indicate the sensitivity of information and signal how it should be managed.

If you receive information from us that has a protective marking, please contact us to learn more about how to handle this information. We may also contact you to discuss the sensitivity of information you provide to inform how it is handled.  

Contact us

Make a complaint to the Ombudsman or Commissioner.

Downloads

Privacy Policy

 

Confidential and anonymous complaints

Anyone can make a complaint to our office anonymously or by adopting a fake name (pseudonym). Complainants can also request that their identity not be disclosed to a particular person or entity (usually Ahpra).

While we always try to assist complainants to the best of our ability, it may be difficult (and sometimes impossible) for us to investigate a complaint without certain information (such as the name of the relevant practitioners or notifier). This is because:

  • we may not be able to gather specific information about the complaint issues
  • it can be difficult for us to clarify or ask any further details about the complaint if we do not have the contact details of a complainant
  • we need to ensure those involved in the complaint are given a fair opportunity to respond to allegations and it may be difficult to explain an allegation without disclosing certain information.

In some circumstances, we may be compelled to share information about a confidential complaint with others, such as if the matter is the subject of legal proceedings.

We prefer that, if possible, people who wish to make a confidential or anonymous complaint contact us by phone. This provides us with an opportunity to check our understanding of the complaint issues and also discuss the limitations we may face in progressing the matter.

Can’t find what you’re looking for? Give us a call on 1300 795 265