Privacy for Patients and Families

What is the Personal Health Information Protection Act?

The Personal Health Information Protection Act, or PHIPA is a provincial law that sets out the rules for health care providers to collect, use and share your personal health information. This law also gives you the right to ask to see and ask for changes to your personal health information if the information is inaccurate or incomplete.

What is “personal health information”?

“Personal health information” or PHI, is any information that can identify you and link you to health care services you receive. This can include your name, address, telephone number, health card number, health professional’s name, reason for seeing a health professional, lab or examination results.

Who sees my personal health information?

OTN uses your personal health information to arrange for your telemedicine appointment and to share those details with you. This means that OTN has to give your personal health information to hospitals and/or doctors involved in that appointment.

If you call OTN, your call will be recorded for quality purposes, securely retained and erased after it is no longer needed. You have the ability to opt out if you do not want your call recorded.

Your personal health information is also used to pay doctors for the services they provide through OTN.

Sometimes, the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care may ask OTN for data to help plan and manage the health care system. When OTN provides this kind of information to the Ministry, it does so in a way that prevents individuals from being identified.

OTN Members may also ask to use information generated by OTN for conducting evaluation or research projects. If your personal health information were involved in this project, you would be notified and asked for your consent. You do not have to participate and may refuse to do so if asked.

How does OTN protect my personal health information?

OTN uses a variety of physical, administrative and technical methods to protect your personal health information, from locked drawers to a private network over which data and images flow between sites.

OTN continually monitors, reviews and updates its practices to ensure the privacy and security of confidential information on the network.

If you call OTN, your call will be recorded for quality purposes, securely retained and erased after it is no longer needed. You have the ability to opt out if you do not want your call recorded.

Can I access my personal health information?

You have the right to see your personal health information, with some exceptions. If you would like to access your personal information, please click here and mail the completed form to the OTN Privacy Officer at the address provided on the form.

OTN will confirm your identity and provide you with your record or a notice indicating why the record cannot be made available to you within 30 days of receiving your request.

Please note: There is a $25 administrative fee to offset the cost of conducting the search for your personal health information and providing it to you.

What if some of my personal health information is incorrect?

If you think that your personal health information includes inaccurate or incomplete information, please click here and mail the completed form to the OTN Privacy Officer at the address provided on the form. The Privacy Officer will investigate the complaint upon receipt and OTN will respond to you within 30 days of receiving your request.

How do I make a complaint about how OTN has handled my personal health information?

If you feel that OTN has not handled your personal health information properly and wish to complain, please click here to complete the form and send it to the OTN Privacy Officer who will investigate the complaint upon receipt.

“Personal Health Information” is any information that can identify a patient and links that patient to health care services  they receive. This includes a patient’s:

  • name
  • address
  • telephone number
  • health card number
  • health care provider’s name
  • reason for referral for a telemedicine appointment
  • laboratory or examination results
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OTN is serious about ensuring patient privacy. Patients with privacy concerns about their Telemedicine appointment are encouraged to complete this form and mail it to Privacy Officer, Ontario Telemedicine Network, 105 Moatfield Drive, Suite 1100, Toronto, ON, M3B 0A2.  If you need to speak to someone immediately, please call 416-446-4110 and ask to speak with a member of OTN’s Privacy Team.  Please do not email this form.

Privacy Policy Framework

More information about OTN’s privacy policy is available through the OTN Privacy Office:

Email: privacy@otn.ca
Phone: 1-855-654-0888
Mail:
Privacy Officer
Ontario Telemedicine Network
105 Moatfield Drive, Suite 1100
Toronto, ON
M3B 0A2