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HCC Case Study: Access to Records

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Published on Apr 29, 2018

The Health Complaints Commissioner (HCC) resolves complaints about healthcare and the handling of health records in Victoria, Australia. See hcc.vic.gov.au for details.

This case study is a real complaint we handled, with names and some details changed for privacy reasons.

THE COMPLAINT

Charlie complained that his local GP clinic would not give him a copy of his health records, which he wanted because he was moving house and planned to find a new doctor in the future.

The clinic receptionist told him they were the property of the clinic and if he wanted to access them he’d need to get a lawyer.


WHAT WE DID

We contacted the clinic to explain that individuals have a right to access their personal health information, do not need a reason for doing so and do not need a lawyer.

We also showed them information about the maximum fees they can charge for providing copies of records.


THE OUTCOME

Charlie received a copy of his health records and the clinic staff learnt about their responsibilities regarding access to health records.

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