About us and this Policy
Western District Health Service ABN 47 616 976 917 (National Centre for Farmer Health, we, us or our) is committed to the protection of your personal information.
Our legal obligations
NCFH are required to comply with the Health Privacy Principles (HPPs) under the Health Records Act 2001 (Vic) (Health Records Act), the Information Privacy Principles (IPPs) under the Privacy and Data Protection Act 2014 (Vic) (Privacy and Data Protection Act), and other Victorian and federal privacy legislation applicable to the handling of personal and health information.
In broad terms, the Health Records Act and HPPs apply to the handling of health information, and the Privacy and Data Protection Act and IPPs apply to the handling of personal information that is not health information (such as your name, age, etc.).
This Policy applies to NCFH’s handling of personal information and health information. ‘Personal information’ means information or an opinion, whether true or not, and whether recorded in a material form or not, about an individual whose identity is apparent or can reasonably be ascertained, from the information or opinion.
‘Sensitive information’ is a subset of personal information for which a higher level of protection is offered (such as information or an opinion about a person’s sexual preference, religious beliefs or racial or ethnic origin).
‘Health information’ includes information about your physical or mental health or other personal information collected to provide, or in providing a health service to you.
Why do NCFH collect your personal information?
NCFH collect your personal information for the following purposes:
- to provide you with health services (such as medical care and treatment);
- to gather statistical information for research purposes;
- to provide you with education and training;
- to consider making you offers of employment or for employment purposes; and
- to receive services from you or the organisation that employs you.
If the purpose of collection is to provide you with health services, your health and personal information is collected and stored in a medical record.
NCFH de-identify all information gathered for statistical and research purposes.
You are not obliged to disclose your personal or health information to NCFH. However, if you do not provide the information requested, NCFH may not be able to provide you with appropriate health care or fulfil any other applicable purposes of collection.
How do NCFH collect your personal information?
NCFH will only collect your personal information where it is reasonably necessary for NCFH’s activities in providing you with health services or to fulfil any other applicable purposes of collection outlined above.
NCFH will collect your personal information in a lawful and fair way and in a manner that is not unreasonably intrusive.
NCFH will only collect your personal information and sensitive information where you have consented, or otherwise in accordance with the law.
NCFH will usually collect your personal information directly from you through your interactions with us, whether in person, over the phone or via the NCFH website.
When NCFH collect your personal information, NCFH will take reasonable steps to ensure that you are made aware of the details of the collection, including the purposes for which the information was collected, the organisations (if any) to which the information will be disclosed, and notify you that this Policy contains details on how you may access or correct your information, or raise any complaints.
What types of personal information do NCFH usually collect?
NCFH collect personal information such as:
- your name;
- your contact details (e.g. address, email, phone number);
- your age;
- your gender;
- your opinion on an issue contained in one of our opinion polls;
- your credit-card number if you choose to shop on our website;
- your racial or ethnic origin (for statistical and research purposes only); and
- for some of our programs and assessment tools, the details of your health and medical history (such as any current health conditions, and past health conditions, and the types of health services you have received or seek).
How do NCFH use your personal information?
NCFH use your personal information for the main purposes of:
- providing you with health services (such as medical care and treatment);
- to gather statistics for research purposes;
- to provide you with education and training;
- to inform you of some NCFH services or programs which may interest you;
- making you offers of employment or for employment purposes; and
- to receive services from you or the organisation that employs you.
NCFH may also use your personal information for purposes which are directly related to these main purposes, in circumstances where you would reasonably expect NCFH to use your information for these purposes.
Do NCFH disclose your personal information to others?
NCFH respect the privacy of your personal information and NCFH will take reasonable steps to keep it confidential and protected.
NCFH will not disclose your personal information to any third parties unless you have consented, or NCFH are otherwise permitted or required to do so by law.
NCFH include privacy clauses in our contractual agreements with third parties, including funding agreements, consultancy and services contracts and various other ad-hoc contractual agreements. This is to ensure that the third parties handle personal information in accordance with the HPPs and IPPs.
In accordance with the law, NCFH will only disclose your personal information without your consent in circumstances such as where NCFH reasonably believe this is necessary to prevent or lessen or prevent a serious threat to the life, health or safety of any individual, or to public health or safety.
Will NCFH disclose your personal information interstate or overseas?
NCFH will not disclose your personal information to any recipient that is located interstate or overseas.
How does NCFH hold and protect your personal information?
NCFH will protect your privacy and the security of your personal information by taking steps to ensure that your personal information is protected against misuse, interference and loss, and unauthorised access, modification or disclosure.
NCFH also use a variety of physical and technological security measures to protect the personal information we hold.
NCFH may hold your personal information in a number of ways including electronically and in physical format.
Your personal information will be stored in secure electronic servers located in Australia and provided by a third party, but the personal information will remain under NCFH control and the third parties will not have access to it.
When your personal information is no longer required (and in the case of health information, the information has been retained for the required periods under health records laws) NCFH will take steps to securely destroy the information or to ensure that the information is de-identified.
Quality of the personal information NCFH hold
NCFH take reasonable steps to ensure that the personal information NCFH collect, use and disclose is accurate, up-to-date, complete and relevant. You can assist NCFH in keeping your information accurate by informing NCFH of any updates to your personal information using our contact details below.
There are several interactive features on the NCFH website that you may use and contribute to, including forums, community calendars, recipes and online polls.
When you interact with NCFH, we suggest that you use your discretion and exercise caution when providing information in forums and chat rooms. When you post personal information in forums or message boards, this information becomes available to anyone with access to the internet. This information can be collected and used by others. If you post personal information in forums (not including your registration information which is not publicly available) you may receive unsolicited messages from other parties in return.
NCFH recommend that you do not post any information that you do not want seen in these public areas. For example, when participating in a forum or chat area, your name will appear on the message board. NCFH recommend that when you register to use our online services, you use a pen name or pseudonym. You must not intentionally use the name of another living person.
As a registered user you are able to modify or delete your own posts. We remind you that any forum post or message can be read, used, reproduced and cited by all.
Ultimately, you are solely responsible for maintaining the secrecy of your passwords and/or any personal information. Please see the NCFH Terms and Conditions for information on how NCFH moderate user generated content.
Can you access and correct your personal information?
You can apply to access or correct your information held by NCFH under the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (Vic) (Freedom of Information Act). The Freedom of Information Act sets out your right to access documents held by NCFH (such as your medical records or other personal information).
Information regarding freedom of information and how to make a freedom of information request can be found on the Office of the Victorian Information Commissioner (OVIC) website http://www.ovic.vic.gov.au/.
Like many website operators, NCFH collect information that your browser sends whenever you visit our website (Log Data).
This Log Data may include information such as your computer’s Internet Protocol (IP) address, browser type, browser version, the pages of the NCFH website that you visit, the time and date of your visit, the time spent on those pages and other statistics.
In addition, NCFH may use third party services such as Google Analytics that collect, monitor and analyse this type of information in order to increase our functionality. These third-party service providers have their own privacy policies addressing how they use such information.
Our Website and cookies
NCFH may collect your personal information through the NCFH website, such as your email address or other contact details when you make an enquiry with NCFH. NCFH will deal with this personal information in accordance with this Policy and the law. You have the option of remaining an anonymous user of the NCFH website, however, many its features are only available to registered users.
NCFH also collect data through use of ‘cookies’. ‘Cookies’ are small data files that your internet browser stores on your computer or other mobile device. Cookies are stored in order for your internet browser to navigate a website and the cookies themselves cannot collect any information stored on your computer or other device.
Some of the cookies may be ‘session’ cookies, which will be deleted when you have ended your internet session and close your browser. Other cookies are ‘persistent’ cookies which are stored on your computer or device until its designated expiration date (e.g. 6 months or 2 years).
The default setting of most internet browsers is to accept cookies automatically, but you can actively delete or disable cookies by changing your browser settings.
Security and privacy violations
Any identified privacy concerns, potential privacy risks or actual privacy breaches will be reported to our privacy officer. Reported incidents will be investigated by our privacy officer to respond to the privacy breach (in accordance with our Privacy Breach Response procedure), who will determine the cause of the breach and take steps to prevent future breaches of the same type.
NCFH will investigate all reported concerns or complaints relating to breaches of privacy or mishandling of health or personal information. You may also make a complaint to the Health Complaints Commissioner in relation to a complaint relating to health information (see www.hcc.vic.gov.au), or to the OVIC in relation to a complaint relating to personal or sensitive information (see www.ovic.vic.gov.au).
NCFH contact details
If you would like further information about NCFH privacy policies and procedures or have any complaints or concerns regarding your privacy please contact us using the following details:
PO Box 283, MacKellar House
Tyers Street, Hamilton, Victoria 3300
Changes to this Policy
We may revise this Policy from time to time. We will update you on any changes to this Policy through our website.
More information about privacy
- Office of the Australian Information Commissioner
Protecting your privacy on the Internet
- Cookie Central
Cookies and privacy FAQ
Last updated: 11th November 2020