What are medical records?
Your records may include:
- test results
- medical reports
- surgical or clinical notes.
Your medical records may be kept in an online database, as a paper file or a combination of both.
Your records are private and confidential.
Privacy and confidentiality
We’re committed to making sure your medical records are private and confidential. In some situations, your health information will need to be shared between healthcare providers.
The Cairns and Hinterland Hospital and Health Service’s Privacy Plan (PDF 993KB) sets out details of the types of personal information we hold, and how that information is dealt with in accordance with both the Information Privacy (IP) Act 2009 and Hospital and Health Boards (HHB) Act 2011. Our Privacy Plan also sets out the process for lodging a privacy complaint and requesting access to personal information, including health records.
To protect your personal information, CHHHS staff must follow the privacy principles contained in the Information Privacy Act 2009 (Qld) (IP Act), which include the nine National Privacy Principles and provisions regarding contracted service providers and the transfer of personal information out of Australia. These principles contain rules about the collection, use, disclosure, security, quality, access, amendment, storage and openness of personal information.
Staff are also bound by Part 7 of the Hospital and Health Boards Act 2011 (Qld) (HHB Act) which sets out the duty of confidentiality and exceptions that permit the disclosure of confidential information by ‘designated persons’. Confidential information most often relates to patients of Queensland Health who may be living or deceased.
More information on how CHHHS handles your personal information can be found in our Privacy Plan (PDF 993KB).
For all concerns about your privacy or confidentiality of personal and confidential information including privacy complaints please contact the relevant Privacy and Confidentiality Contact Officer with any enquiries or email: CHHHS-RTI-Privacy@health.qld.gov.au.
Accessing your medical records
You have the right to apply for access to information held in your health records under the Administrative Access Scheme. To apply for access, complete the Administrative Access Application form (PDF, 221KB) or contact the Administrative Access Officer, Information Access Unit on 07 4226 8683 or ROI-CBH@health.qld.gov.au.
When seeking access to your health information, you will need to provide evidence of your identity, such as:
- copy of a certificate or extract from a register of births
- drivers licence (which could include an electronic scanned copy) or Proof of Age card
- a statutory declaration from an individual who has known the person for at least one year, or if the person is a current prisoner they can provide a photocopy of their prison identity card
- The photocopy must be certified by a relevant Corrective Services employee confirming the prisoner’s identity.
If you have any questions or concerns regarding evidence of identity documents or requirements, please contact our Administrative Access Officer.
If your application cannot be processed under administrative access, it will generally be referred for processing under the Information Privacy Act 2009 (Qld) or Right to Information Act 2009 (Qld). Read more about making a right to information application.
GP access to your hospital medical records
Your GP needs access to your hospital records, imaging and test results so they can give you ongoing care and treatment after you've been in hospital.
You’ll usually be given a discharge summary when you leave hospital, which you should take to your GP on your next visit. The hospital may send it directly to your GP. The summary will list the tests, procedures and treatments you had in hospital, and other important information.
Online access for GPs
GPs can register to have online access to medical records and patient information from Queensland Health clinical and administrative systems.
These may include:
- pathology and radiology results
- allergies and alerts
- care plans and discharge summaries.
If you don’t want your GP to have access to your information, you can opt out online or by calling 13 43 25 84. We can also arrange interpreter services for you.
Read more about what sort of information your GP can access.