Privacy and Confidentiality
Protecting the Privacy of Your Information
To provide the best care possible, we need to collect and use information about you and your family. CHEO is committed to keeping your information safe and confidential, and follows rules set out in law about collecting, using, and disclosing your information.
How We Protect Your Information
We have safeguards (i.e. security, passwords, policies) in place to make sure your information stays private. Only people who need to see your personal records are allowed to look at them.
In general, we assume you give consent to share your information with people involved in your care, and we will ask for your consent before we collect, use or share your information for any purpose other than our stated activities. You may also withhold or withdraw this consent at any time by contacting the hospital Health Records department.
How We Use Your Information
To provide care for you. Your information is used by your care providers and trainees who are part of your health care team.
To teach. Your information may be used to support our partnership with the University of Ottawa and other schools, while adequately protecting your privacy.
To conduct research and compile statistics. Researchers may use your health information while working on a study approved by the CHEO Research Ethics Board.
To improve the care we provide by conducting quality improvement and risk management activities.
To obtain payment for your treatment.
CHEO may also use or disclose your personal health information in the following ways, unless you tell us not to:
- Share your information, in whole or in part, with outside health care providers involved in your care, which may include their access to your electronic health record.
- Conduct patient satisfaction surveys: We care about our patient’s and want to hear from you about the quality of care and service you received. We use this information to help improve the care we will provide in the future.
- Support fundraising activities: Our Foundation is dedicated to supporting CHEO by raising funds for research, medical education, and the improvement of patient care. We may share only your name and address with our Foundation.
Who Can Look at Your Information
We only give your information to those people who need it and have a right to it by law. The people who may see your information include:
- You, or the person responsible for making decisions for you ,
- Your care providers, both inside and outside the hospital.
- CHEO is a member of eCHN (electronic Child Health Network). This program allows doctors and healthcare professionals at other eCHN member locations involved in the care of your child to have quick access to your child’s health information from CHEO. This information will help doctors and healthcare professionals in making decisions regarding the care of your child.
- As of May 2018, CHEO is a contributing organization to ConnectingOntario. This is a provincial Electronic Health Record (EHR) program that provides health care providers with access to your child’s health information from CHEO. Access to the ConnectingOntario Clinical Viewer is restricted to those who provide or assist with patient care. CHEO, along with all other organizations participating in the ConnectingOntario program, must follow all applicable health privacy laws (including the Personal Health Information and Protection Act, 2004). Learn more about the ConnectingOntario program.
- People working for a health agency, such as the Ministry of Health, if required by law.
- Other people for whom you have given your consent, or when required by law.
Your have the right to:
- Request access to your personal health information;
- Request a correction to your personal information if it is incorrect;
- Withdraw your consent for uses and disclosures indicated above by contacting us.
How To Access Your Health Information:
You can obtain a copy of, or view, your health record by contacting CHEO’s Health Record Services. They can be reached by phone at 613-737-7600, ext. 2292, or by fax at 613-738-4855. Please note, we require a written request that is signed by the patient (if 12 years of age or older) or the parent/legal guardian before the request can be fulfilled.
How to Access Other Information
As of January 1, 2012, all hospitals in Ontario will be designated as institutions under Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FIPPA). This legislation has two main purposes – access to information and protection of privacy. The Act applies to records in the custody or control of the Hospital. Upon request, certain records must be made available, subject to limited exemptions as provided for in the Act.
Please refer to the Access to Information page for further details and guidance on making a request.
Contact our Privacy Officer if:
- you do not want to receive our satisfaction survey
- you do not want your contact information shared with the CHEO Foundation
- you wish to withdraw or place “conditions” on your consent for how your information is used or shared
- you would like more information about our information practices,
- you have any privacy related inquiries and/or complaints about CHEO’s participation in the ConnectingOntario program
Contact our Chief Privacy Officer:
CHEO Privacy Office
401 Smyth Road
613-737-7600 ext. 3899
Contact Information for Privacy Commissioner of Ontario
If you think CHEO has violated your privacy rights, you may contact the Information/Privacy Commissioner of Ontario at:
2 Bloor Street East, Suite 1400, Toronto, Ontario, M4W 1A8.
Tel: (416) 326-3333, or 1-800-387-0073