Address Unley | 199 Unley Road Hawthorn | 80 Belair Rd
Phone Unley | 08 8373 0355 Hawthorn | 08 7129 3094
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Practice Policies

PRIVACY POLICY

Health Information Collection & Use

You have chosen to attend our practice. To properly attend to your care information of a personal nature may need to be collected from you. Malvern Medical Centre (MMC) respects your right to privacy and this policy has been prepared to advise you of how we deal with the information we collect about you. If you would like to know more, please feel free to discuss our Privacy Policy with a member of our senior admin staff.

What information about you do we collect?

At your first visit, a medical file will be commenced for you. This will include:

  • Your name, address, date of birth, Medicare number and/or concession card numbers, home/work/mobile phone numbers, details of person/s to contact in the case of an emergency

During the consultation the doctor will ask a series of questions relating to your health and well-being. This information will be recorded to assist in your continuing care.

What happens with the information we collect?

All information is placed in your patient file and is only accessed when necessary for your care. It may be necessary to disclose your personal information to others involved in your health care, including specialists, allied health providers and diagnostic providers. This will include referral, reports and results to those providers. In an urgent situation, you may be unable to give consent, but we may still need to provide this information.

You can decline to have your health information used in all or some of the ways outlined above, but this may influence the ability to manage your health care to provide the best outcome for you.

Your information may be accessed for research and quality assurance purposes, to improve individual and community health care. This may occur during the accreditation process. In some situations your information may need to be provided to government agencies under particular laws.

If you do not want your information used for any purpose other than the reason for which you have come to the practice, you must let our admin team know.

Care is taken to avoid inadvertent disclosure of personal information, e.g. patients are identified appropriately, follow-up reminders envelopes are marked “private and confidential”. Appointment schedules and patient files are not visible to other patients. Computer screens in consulting rooms are cleared prior to the next patient.

Steps are taken to protect the personal information collected from misuse, loss and unauthorised access, modification or disclosure. Electronic personal health records are backed-up. Your consent is required when transferring files to another practice. Your new doctor will arrange this with you. Your records are kept for a minimum of seven years after your last attendance or up to the age of twenty five years for a child who has attended our clinic.

Prior to signing consent to the release of health information patients are made aware they can request a copy of the practice privacy policy and collection statement.

Patient consent for the transfer of health information to other providers or agencies is obtained on the first visit. Once signed this form is scanned into the patient’s record and its completion noted.

Note: Consent for transfer of information differs from procedural consent.

ZERO TOLERANCE POLICY

MMC takes very seriously the responsibility to respond to any abuse, threat of or actual violence directed to doctors, staff and others by patients.

There is a zero tolerance approach to any verbal, aggressive and violent abuse and behaviour towards doctors, nurses, admin staff or patients. Doctors, nurses and admin staff have a right to care for others without fear of being attacked or abused. To successfully provide these services a mutual respect between all parties must be in place.

Doctors, nurses and admin staff aim to be polite, helpful, and sensitive to all patients’ individual needs and circumstances. All parties understand that ill patients do not always act in a reasonable manner and will take this into consideration when trying to deal with a misunderstanding or complaint.

However, aggressive, abusive or violent behaviour will not be tolerated. Abusers will be required to leave the premises and to transfer their care to another practice. The right to call the police is reserved.

The list below of unacceptable behaviour directed towards any doctor, nurse, admin team member or other patients which will not be tolerated. The list is indicative rather than exhaustive:

  • Using offensive language or swearing
  • Physical violence
  • Verbal abuse and racist language
  • Sexual harassment
  • Damage to any practice property.

APPOINTMENT CANCELLATION AND “NO SHOW” POLICY

It is requested that patients provide a minimum of 2 hours’ notice if they cannot attend or need to reschedule an appointment.

This provides the opportunity to offer that appointment to another patient who may need to see a doctor more urgently. An appointment can be cancelled or rescheduled online at any time or by calling the Centre on 8373 0355 (Unley) or 7129 3094 (Hawthorn).

Doctors reserve the right to charge a 'Did Not Attend' fee of $50.00 if a patient fails to cancel an appointment within the requested time. This fee can be paid either before or at the next appointment at the Centre.

Patients who repeatedly fail to attend appointments without notice (“no shows”) may face a restriction being placed on their patient record and will not be able to make further appointments.

PATHOLOGY AND TEST RESULT FOLLOW UP

MMC has a strong preference for patients to make appointments to follow up the results of any tests undertaken, either face-to-face or telehealth.

If test results require follow up, your doctor will ensure you are contacted to arrange an appointment.

DRUGS OF DEPENDENCE

MMC is committed to providing the most appropriate and medically sound advice at all times. This means that on occasion, if you are not known to a particular doctor, and have a request for certain medications, your request may be denied. This includes, but is not limited to, medications that fall into the category of drugs of dependence, such as:

  • Benzodiazepines (and other sleeping tablets)
  • Morphine-based medications
  • Oxycodone, Oxycontin, Tramadol and Panadeine Forte
  • Any other strong pain medication or sedative.

MMC policy is to ensure, as far as practicable, the safety of patients and to ensure that appropriate care is given. It is unlawful for doctors to prescribe some of these medications to any patient without appropriate authority. If you have further questions regarding your medication scripts, please contact Drug & Alcohol Services SA on 1300 13 1340.

REPEAT PRESCRIPTIONS

The supply of medication without a consultation is potentially hazardous. In the interests of patient health and safety, prescriptions will usually only be issued after a medical consultation. A prescription will not be written for a new drug without a consultation, for which a fee may apply.

Repeat prescriptions may be ordered online via our website.

REFERRALS

Referrals to a medical specialist generally require a consultation with the referring doctor.

Repeat referrals may be ordered online via our website

SICK CERTIFICATES

Certificates for sickness or carer’s leave require a consultation with a doctor. Certificates cannot be backdated.

INFECTION CONTROL

MMC arranges sterilisation of non-disposable instruments in accordance with the Royal Australian College of General Practice Guidelines.

WAITING ROOM

Every effort is made to keep appointment times. However, delays may occur due to unforeseen and emergency needs. Your patience is appreciated during these times.

Patients are welcome to ring the Centre to check whether their doctor is running on schedule. We may give an estimate by advising how many patients are waiting to be seen.

PRIVACY

MMC is committed to maintaining the confidentiality of your personal health information at all times and ensuring that this information is only available to authorised persons involved in your care. Your medical record is confidential.

Please note that information is unable to be given about other patients or confirm whether they are in attendance or have made an appointment.

The practice Privacy Policy is outlined above and on display in our waiting rooms.

PATIENT RECORDS

As required by law, patients’ medical records are kept for at least seven years after their final consultation and for children until age twenty five. Please advise the reception staff should you require your records to be forwarded to another health care provider.

Practice policy is to maintain the security of personal health information at all times. Access to information is only granted to authorised persons.

MOBILE PHONES

As a courtesy to others, we request that patients’ use of mobile phones in the waiting room be kept to a minimum.

If you choose to answer your phone while speaking with the doctor, he or she may choose to immediately end your consultation.

TELEPHONE CALLS

Doctors are not usually available to take telephone calls during consulting times. In some cases, the admin team may take a message which will be passed to the doctor as soon as practicable. Urgent calls will be directed to a practice nurse if available.

EMAIL/SMS/FACSIMILE

The practice policy is not to receive emails from patients requiring medical advice. The following message appears if an email is sent to reception@malvernmedicalcentre.com.au:

This is an Automatic Reply. Please DO NOT reply to this email. This email address is not monitored so there will not be any response to your email. Malvern Medical Centre DOES NOT accept any correspondence electronically (i.e. email, SMS, websites) from patients, relatives, friends of patients, medical providers, insurance companies etc. requiring medical advice. If medical advice is required, please phone the surgery to arrange an appointment on 8373 0355 or 7129 3094. If this an emergency, dial 000.

Communication with patients via electronic means, namely SMS or facsimile, is conducted with appropriate regard to the privacy laws relating to health information and confidentiality of patients’ health information.

INTERPRETER SERVICES

If you require interpreting assistance, please advise our reception team so that arrangements for interpreting may be made.

PATIENT FEEDBACK

Feedback from patients is welcomed. This website includes a feedback section and we invite you to consult that information.

All expressions of gratitude are gratefully received.

On a regular basis, patients are invited to complete a questionnaire on their views of MMC and how it could be improved. We use an independent provider to review and report on this feedback to ensure confidentiality. The feedback is also compared with other practices and helps us consider improvements to services and facilities.

Where the feedback is a complaint with any aspect of the service received, the matter will be investigated if appropriate the outcome of the investigation will be confirmed in writing.

It is generally best to handle feedback locally. However, if patients wish to address feedback through external parties you may contact the following agency:

Health and Community Services Complaints Commissioner:

Level 4, East Wing, 50 Grenfell Street, Adelaide, SA 5000 PO Box 199, Rundle Mall SA 5000.

Complaints: 08 8228 8666 / Freecall 1800 232 007

Hours: 10.00am to 4.00pm Monday to Thursday


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