Upgrades to the privacy settings of your medical record

In August, you will see lots of new features for managing the privacy settings of your medical record. We have spent the last year testing these out with medical professionals and with patient groups and you will see the results in the next few weeks.

From August, each data point in your record will have one of four privacy labels: general health, sexual health, mental health and social care. For example a glucose result for diabetes may be ‘general health’ while a Chlamydia test may be under ‘sexual health’.

The author of each data point will decide the privacy label at the time of entering the data point. For example, a diabetes team sending a glucose test result may file it under ‘general health’ but if the test result came from a sexual health team they may give it a ‘sexual health’ label so as to hide their activity and protect your privacy. For a more technical description of how IT departments and software developers can do this see our developer documentation on privacy labels.

At any point, the patient can see all their data and all privacy labels. The patient can also change the privacy labels for a data point. For example, a discussion with a diabetes specialist will be under ‘general health’ but if during the discussion the patient’s HIV diagnosis is mentioned the patient can change the privacy label to ‘sexual health’ to maintain the privacy of their HIV diagnosis.

You can decide which teams get access to which privacy labels. For example, you may give your family physician access to all of your data but only share the ‘general health’ and ‘social care’ privacy labels of your medical record with your carers.

Here are some preview screenshots of the upcoming changes.

Medical data like your diagnosis will be categorized into four privacy labels: general health, sexual health, mental health and social care.
Patients will have finer control over who sees what data.
Patients will have finer control over who sees what data.

You should also read about the changes we have coming for the consent process. We hope you like these new features. If you have any questions, comments or suggestions for improvement we would love to hear from you.

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