My Health Record update

16-Nov-2018

 

 

On Monday ASMOF (Federal) wrote to crossbench senators raising our outstanding concerns with My Health Records legislation. ASMOF was particularly concerned about employers’ access to MHRs, as well as protecting data from being used for commercial purposes. Whilst data made available through My Health Records can be utilised to enhance the delivery of public health services and improve population health, there are significant risks associated with this data being accessible to commercial interests and insurers, who have the capacity to match population level data with their considerable membership data in order to re-identify ‘anonymous’ data.

 

Amendments to My Health Record legislation have now passed through the Senate, and the opt-out deadline has been extended to 31 January 2019. The ACTU have reported that the updated My Health Records Amendment (Strengthening Privacy) is a ‘major wins for workers’, with amendments which:
  • Prevent employers and insurers from requiring the disclosure of MHR information by employees
  • Prevent the use of MHR information for the purposes of hiring or continuing to employ someone or for use for insurance purposes, including workers compensation.
  • Ensure that the MHR system cannot be privatised or operated by a private provider
  • Strengthen protections against the use of MHR data for statistical purposes, and prevent insurers from using the data.
  • Emphasise the ability to request the complete deletion of a MHR at any time.
  • Strengthen protections for people experiencing domestic violence.

The amendments will be considered by the House of Representatives in two weeks before they become law.

Do you have outstanding concerns about the use of My Health Records? Let us know so we can continue our advocacy by emailing asmof@asmof.org.au.