Quote Of The Year

Timeless Quotes - Sadly The Late Paul Shetler - "Its not Your Health Record it's a Government Record Of Your Health Information"


H. L. Mencken - "For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong."

Wednesday, November 07, 2018

Greg Hunt Announces New Changes To #myHealthRecord - Moves A Little!

Here is the release:

The Hon. Greg Hunt MP
Minister for Health
7 November 2018

A stronger My Health Record

The Morrison Government will introduce further legislative amendments to ensure the safety and  privacy of health information in the My Health Record system including provisions to protect  people against domestic violence and tougher penalties for those that misuse the system. We have examined the recommendations from the Senate Inquiry, we have listened to concerns raised by a range of groups and My Health Record users and will move the following amendments to Labor’s original legislation to further strengthen the My Health Record Act:
1. Increase penalties for improper use of a My Health Record:
Maximum criminal penalty increasing from 2 years to 5 years jail
Increase of maximum fines for individuals from $126,000 to $315,000
2. Strengthening provisions to safeguard against domestic violence. The proposed provisions will ensure that a person cannot be the authorised representative of a minor if they have restricted access to the child, or may pose a risk to the child, or a person associated with the child. In cases where there may be a risk to a person’s life, health or safety then the amendments will remove the requirement for the Australian Digital Health Agency to notify individuals about certain decisions.
3. Prohibiting an employer from requesting and using health information in an individual’s My Health Record and protecting employees and potential employees from discriminatory use of their My Health Record. Importantly, employers or insurers cannot simply avoid the  prohibition by asking the individuals to share their My Health Record information with them.
4. No health information or de-identified data to be released to private health insurers, and other types of insurers for research or public health purposes.
5. The proposed amendments also reinforce that the My Health Record system is a critical  piece of national health infrastructure operating for the benefit of all Australians, by removing the ability of the System Operator to delegate functions to organisations other than the Department of Health and the Chief Executive of Medicare.
Furthermore, the Government will conduct a review looking into whether it is appropriate that  parents have default access to the records of 14-17 year olds
Currently a young person aged 14 and over can take control of their My Health Record at any time  by removing their parents access to their record. These proposed amendments are in addition to the amendments announced in July, which have already passed the lower house. They include that law enforcement agencies can only access a  person’s My Health Record with a warrant or court order and anyone who chooses to cancel arecord at any time will have that record permanently deleted. While these changes are in response to the Senate Inquiry calling for additional safeguards, neither the legislative nor the reference committee inquiries identified any actual cases of such concern despite 6 years of operation and 6 million users. 

Those that wish to delete their record after the November 15 opt-out date can do so at any time throughout their lives and their record will be deleted forever. More than 6.1 million Australians already have a My Health Record and over 13,000 healthcare  professional organisations are connected, including general practices, hospitals, pharmacies, diagnostic imaging and pathology practices.
There has never been a reported security breach of the system.
The legislation to enable My Health Record to become an opt-out system passed the Parliament unanimously
in 2015 and received the unanimous support of both houses and the strong endorsement of Labor. In addition all State and Territory Health Ministers unanimously reaffirmed their support as recently as the August COAG Health Council.

At first reading the release does not acknowledge these important issues were not noticed until now by the ADHA and Governemnt, that they want to still press on with opt-out, are not extending the opt-out period.

I see a political fight brewing. What do you think?


Anonymous said...

I can't see how the changes will benefit domestic violence victims. How will the system operator know a parent has restricted access to a child? A friend of mine recently went to opt out for her and her 13-year-old daughter only to discover that the father - who has no access to the child - had set up a My Health Record for her and had full access to it. She was horrified.

Plus, when a person flees domestic violence, custody and access issues take a long time to be formalised.

The announcement of further legislative changes adds to the sense of chaos around the roll-out. Hunt may have thought it would assuage concerns but I think it adds to them.

Anonymous said...

The GREATEST LIE OF ALL being used by the government to lull the entire community into a false sense of trust and security is the grossly misleading statement which no-one, including journalists and Senators, have bothered to question, THAT:

...... after 6 years of operation and 6 million registered users there have been no actual cases of concern.

To examine this claim it is necessary to look for supporting evidence.

There is no evidence the system is being used and accessed for clinical information (which is quite different from having information automatically uploaded and dumped into it).

Consequently if the system is not being used it cannot be tested for efficacy, accuracy and reliability, and if it is not being used there will be no concerns.

It is all well and good to enrol 6 million individuals (they are not users if they do not use the system) through an obligatory opt-in process as in Northern Qld and the Blue Mountains. Yet, there is no evidence available to show that these individuals even know they have been registered.!!

In essence this forced enrolment was conjured up by the ADHA and the Department to enable them to make the false claim there have been "no concerns with the system".

This is a classic case of the government making false claims to support their objectives of forcing everyone into become enrolled.