St Michael’s Hospital (STMH) is committed to ensuring the privacy and confidentiality of your personal information.
St Michael’s Hospital must comply with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the Data Protection Act 1988. The 1988 Act was amended by the Data Protection (Amendment) Act 2003. The 2003 Amendment Act brought our law into line with the EU Data Protection Directive 95/46/EC.
These legal frameworks ensures St Michael’s Hospital handles your personal information (including but not limited to patient health information).
If you require more detailed information about St Michael’s Hospital’s information handling practices, then you will need to read this document.
|By letter:||The Office of the Data Protection Commissioner, Canal House, Station Road, Portarlington, Co. Laois|
|By telephone:||+353 (0761) 104 800|
“Personal data” means any information relating to an identified or identifiable natural person (‘data subject’); an identifiable natural person is one who can be identified, directly or indirectly, in particular by reference to an identifier such as a name, an identification number, location data, an online identifier or to one or more factors specific to the physical, physiological, genetic, mental, economic, cultural or social identity of that natural person:
“Data concerning health” means personal data related to the physical or mental health of a natural person, including the provision of health care services, which reveal information about his or her health status.
“Primary purpose” means the specific function or activity for which the information is collected. Any use or disclosure of the personal information for another purpose is known as the “secondary purpose”.
“Processing” means any operation or set of operations which is performed on personal data or on sets of personal data, whether or not by automated means, such as collection, recording, organisation, structuring, storage, adaptation or alteration, retrieval, consultation, use, disclosure by transmission, dissemination or otherwise making available, alignment or combination, restriction, erasure or destruction.
“Pseudonymisation” means the processing of personal data in such a manner that the personal data can no longer be attributed to a specific data subject without the use of additional information, provided that such additional information is kept separately and is subject to technical and organisational measures to ensure that the personal data are not attributed to an identified or identifiable natural person.
“Controller” means the natural or legal person, public authority, agency or other body which, alone or jointly with others, determines the purposes and means of the processing of personal data; where the purposes and means of such processing are determined by Union or Member State law, the controller or the specific criteria for its nomination may be provided for by Union or Member State law.
“Processor” means a natural or legal person, public authority, agency or other body which processes personal data on behalf of the controller.
“Consent” of the data subject means any freely given, specific, informed and unambiguous indication of the data subject’s wishes by which he or she, by a statement or by a clear affirmative action, signifies agreement to the processing of personal data relating to him or her.
“Personal data breach” means a breach of security leading to the accidental or unlawful destruction, loss, alteration, unauthorised disclosure of, or access to, personal data transmitted, stored or otherwise processed.
“Binding corporate rules” means personal data protection policies which are adhered to by a controller or processor established on the territory of a Member State for transfers or a set of transfers of personal data to a controller or processor in one or more third countries within a group of undertakings, or group of enterprises engaged in a joint economic activity.
“Supervisory authority” means an independent public authority which is established by a Member State pursuant to Article 51.
In order to provide you with the required health care services St Michael’s Hospital will need to collect and use your personal information.
2.3.2 Other individuals
In order to enable St Michael’s Hospital to engage with you for the relevant primary purpose, St Michael’s Hospital may need to collect and use your personal information. If you provide incomplete or inaccurate information to us or withhold personal information from us we may not be able to engage with you as required to meet that primary purpose.
We collect personal information from you that is reasonably necessary to provide you with health care services and for administrative and internal business purposes related to your attendance at St Michael’s Hospital.
Often this may include collecting information about your health history, family history, your ethnic background or your current lifestyle to assist the health care team in diagnosing and treating your condition.
We will usually collect your health information directly from you. Sometimes, we may need to collect information about you from a third party (such as a relative or another health service provider).
2.4.2 Other individuals
We collect personal information from you that is reasonably necessary to engage with you for the primary purpose, including the provision of services by St Michael’s Hospital, for St Michael’s Hospital’s functions or activities and for administrative and internal business purposes related to your dealings with St Michael’s Hospital.
We will usually collect your personal information directly from you. Sometimes we may need to collect information about you from a third party; however, we will only do this where it is not reasonable or practical for us to collect this information directly from you.
Storage of personal information may be in physical (paper) form and may also include storage through electronic systems for storage of personal information (including clinical images taken for diagnostic or treatment purposes) on some diagnostic equipment where you have undergone a diagnostic procedure using such equipment in St Michael’s Hospital.
2.5.2 Other individuals
Personal information may be stored in various forms including electronic and/or paper systems in accordance with usual practices, and subject to the purposes of your engagement with St Michael’s Hospital.
St Michael’s Hospital only uses your personal information for the primary purpose for which you have given the information to us, unless one of the following applies:
- The secondary purpose is related (or for sensitive information, directly related) to the primary purpose for which you have given us the information and you would reasonably expect, or we have told you, that your information is usually disclosed for another purpose or to other individuals, organisations or agencies (see related secondary purposes set out below);
- you have consented for us to use your information for another purpose, for example research;
- St Michael’s Hospital is required or authorised by law to disclose your information for another purpose (see related secondary purposes set out below);
- the disclosure of your information by St Michael’s Hospital will prevent or lessen a serious and/or imminent threat to somebody’s life, health or safety or to public health or public safety; or
- the disclosure of your information by St Michael’s Hospital is reasonably necessary for the enforcement of a criminal law or a law imposing a penalty or sanction, or for the protection of public revenue.
St Michael’s Hospital may use or disclose your personal information as specified above via electronic processes, where available or relevant.
Related secondary purposes include:
The following is a list of examples of related secondary purposes for which St Michael’s Hospital may use your personal information, but it is not an exhaustive list.
Patient specific examples:
(a) Use among health professionals to provide your treatment
Modern health care practices mean that your treatment will be provided by a multi-disciplinary team of health professionals working together.
You may be referred for diagnostic tests such as pathology or radiology and our staff may consult with senior medical experts when determining your diagnosis or treatment. With developments in technology (e.g. telemedicine) our staff may consult with health professionals and medical experts, both public and private, located remotely, including outside St Michael’s Hospital, in relation to your diagnosis or treatment, including by sending health information and clinical images electronically. Our staff may also refer you to other health service providers, both public and private, for further treatment during and following your admission (for example, to a physiotherapist or outpatient for community health services). We may disclose your personal information to the relevant provider to the extent required for any such referral (including disclosing that information electronically).
Your personal information will only be disclosed to those health care workers involved in, or consulted in relation to, your treatment and associated administration and to the extent required to meet that purpose.
These health professionals will share your personal information as part of the process of providing your treatment.
We will only do this while maintaining confidentiality of this information and protecting your privacy in accordance with the law.
As part of your care, we may be required to disclose your information to third party medical suppliers for the purpose of ordering specific products or to enable appropriate follow up, for example, if you require prosthesis, certain pharmaceutical treatments or other medical implantable products as part of your treatment.
(b) Assessment for provision of health care services
St Michael’s Hospital may collect your personal information for the purpose of assessing your suitability for health care services at a St Michael’s Hospital. Where personal information is collected and you do not become a patient of the hospital, your personal information may be retained. Where your assessment has been conducted at the request of your GP, St Michael’s Hospital will report the outcome of the assessment to that GP as it may be relevant to any ongoing treatment or care provided to you by them.
Where you undergo assessment or treatment by a third party provider (for example Radiotherapy in St Luke’s Hospital) during your admission to a St Michael’s Hospital for the purpose of transferring your care to that third party, St Michael’s Hospital may disclose your personal information to the third party provider for that purpose.
(c) Your local doctor
St Michael’s Hospital will usually send a discharge summary to your referring medical practitioner or nominated general practitioner following an admission. This is in accordance with international norms and long-standing medical practice and is intended to inform your doctor of information that may be relevant to any ongoing care or treatment provided by them. This discharge summary may be sent to your referring medical practitioner or general practitioner electronically.
If your nominated general practitioner has changed or your general practitioner’s details have changed following a previous admission, you must let us know.
(d) Other health service providers
If in the future you are being treated by a medical practitioner or health care facility that needs to have access to the health record of your treatment, we will provide a copy of your record to that medical practitioner or health care facility provide this request is processed in the correct manner.
We may provide information about your health records to another medical practitioner or health facility outside St Michael’s Hospital without your consent in the event of an emergency where your life or health is at risk.
(e) Students and trainees
(f) Relatives, guardian, close friends or legal representative
We may provide information about your condition to your spouse or partner, parent, child, other relatives, close personal friends, guardians, or a person exercising your power of attorney under an enduring power of attorney or who you have appointed your enduring guardian, unless you tell us that you do not wish us to disclose your personal information to any such person.
(g) Other St Vincent’s Healthcare Group entities
St Michael’s Hospital may share your personal information amongst its other Group Hospital’s listed below. For example, this may occur where you are transferred between any of St Vincent’s Healthcare Group hospitals or to coordinate your care.
- St Vincent’s University Hospital
- St Vincent’s Private Hospital
(h) Other common uses
In order to provide the best possible environment in which to treat you, we may also use your personal information where necessary for:
- activities such as quality assurance processes, accreditation, audits, risk and claims management, patient experience and satisfaction surveys and staff education and training;
- invoicing, billing and account management, including storage of provider details on St Michael’s Hospital billing software;
- the purpose of complying with any applicable laws – for example, in response to a subpoena or compulsory reporting to State authorities (for example, National Cancer Registry);
- the purpose of sending you standard reminders, for example for appointments and follow-up care, by text message or email to the number or address which you have provided to us; and
- we may anonymise or aggregate the personal information that we collect for the purpose of service management; monitoring, planning and development.
- To identify patients that might be suitable for clinical trials/research. Any participation in a trial or research study will require your consent.
(i) Other uses with your consent
With your consent we may also use your information for other purposes such as including sharing your information with your insurance company and research.
Other non-patient specific examples:
(k) Contractors under agreement
(l) Application for accreditation by health professionals
St Michael’s Hospital collects personal information from health professionals seeking accreditation and submitting to the credentialing process. Personal information provided by health professionals in this context is collected, used, stored and disclosed by St Michael’s Hospital for the purposes of fulfilling its obligations in connection with the accreditation sought.
(m) Job applications
St Michael’s Hospital collects personal information of job applicants who have responded to an advertised position for the primary purpose of assessing and (if successful) engaging applicants. The purpose for which St Michael’s Hospital uses personal information of job applicants includes:
- managing the individual’s employment, engagement or placement;
- insurance purposes; and
- ensuring that it holds relevant contact information.
St Michael’s Hospital may also store information provided by job applicants who were unsuccessful for the purposes of future recruitment or employment opportunities.
(n) Students / Trainees
St Michael’s Hospital collect personal information of students or trainees on placement for the primary purposes of providing the placement and facilitating assessment. The purposes for which St Michael’s Hospital uses personal information of students or trainees include:
- managing the individual’s placement;
- ensuring the quality and safety of clinical care provided to St Michael’s Hospital patients;
- insurance purposes;
- ensuring that it holds relevant contact information; and
- satisfying its legal obligations including obligations under any placement agreement.
St Michael’s Hospital may also store information provided by students or trainees following placement for the purpose of future recruitment or employment opportunities.
(o) Education and community engagement
St Michael’s Hospital may offer opportunities for health practitioners to participate in educational events or seminars for the purpose of continuing professional development or community engagement. When you register for or attend an event, St Michael’s Hospital may collect your personal information for the purpose of providing the service and recording your attendance.
St Michael’s Hospital may disclose your personal information to third parties for the purpose of confirming your attendance at the event including the provision of attendance records or certification.
You have a right to have access to the personal information that we hold about you (for patients, this includes health information contained in your health record). You can also request an amendment to personal information that we hold about you should you believe that it contains inaccurate information. The request will be reviewed with the relevant parties.
St Michael’s Hospital will allow access or make the requested changes unless there is a reason under the GDPR or other relevant law to refuse such access or refuse to make the requested changes.
If we do not agree to change your personal information in accordance with your request, we will permit you to make a statement of the requested changes and we will enclose this with your personal information.
Should you wish to obtain access to or request changes to your personal information held by St Michael’s Hospital please contact our Release of Information department at firstname.lastname@example.org.
St Michael’s Hospital may recover reasonable costs associated with supplying this information to you.
St Michael’s Hospital will take reasonable steps to ensure that your personal information which we may collect, use or disclose is accurate, complete and up-to-date.
St Michael’s Hospital will take reasonable steps to protect your personal information from misuse, interference, loss, unauthorised access, modification or disclosure. We use technologies and processes such as access control procedures, network firewalls, encryption and physical security to protect your privacy.
St Michael’s Hospital may enter into arrangements with third parties to store data we collect or to access the data to provide services (such as data processing), and such data may include personal information, outside of the EEA. St Michael’s Hospital will take reasonable steps to ensure that the third parties do not breach the GDPR requirements. The steps St Michael’s Hospital will take may include ensuring the third party is bound by privacy protection obligations which are the same (or substantially the same) as those which bind St Michael’s Hospital and requiring that the third party has information security measures in place which are of an acceptable standard and approved by St Michael’s Hospital.
|By letter:||Data Protection Officer, St. Michael’s Hospital, George’s Street Lower, Dún Laoghaire, Dublin, A96 D628|
|By telephone:||(01) 2806901|
- St Michael’s Hospital does not agree to provide you with access to your personal information; or
- you have or a complaint about our information handling practices,
You can lodge a complaint with or contact our Data Protection Officer on the details above or directly with the Office of the
Data Commissioner. Full contact details can be found in section 2.4 or their website www.dataprotection.ie
When you use our website, we do not attempt to identify you as an individual user and we will not collect personal information about you unless you specifically provide this to us.
Sometimes, we may collect your personal information if you choose to provide this to us via an online form or by email, for example, if you:
- complete your pre-admission form online;
- upload personal information into a St Michael’s Hospital App;
- submit a general enquiry via our contacts page;
- register to receive share market reports;
- register for an event or request information; or
- send a written complaint or enquiry to our Privacy Officer.
A “cookie” is a small bit of data our server sends to your browser that allows our server to identify and interact more effectively with your computer. Cookies do not identify individual users, but they do identify your ISP and your browser type.
This website uses temporary cookies. This means that upon closing your browser, the temporary cookie assigned to you will be destroyed and no personal information is maintained which will identify you at a later date.
Personal information such as your email address is not collected unless you provide it to us. We do not disclose domain names or aggregate information to third parties other than agents who assist us with this website and who are under obligations of confidentiality. You can configure your browser to accept or reject all cookies and to notify you when a cookie is used. We suggest that you refer to your browser instructions or help screens to learn more about these functions. However, please note that if you configure your browser so as not to receive any cookies, a certain level of functionality of the St Michael’s Hospital website and other websites may be lost.
We may create links to third party websites. We are not responsible for the content or privacy practices employed by websites that are linked from our website.
We will only use personal information collected via our website for the purposes for which you have given us this information.
We will not use or disclose your personal information to other organisations or anyone else unless:
- you have consented for us to use or disclose your personal information for this purpose;
- you would reasonably expect or we have told you (including via this policy) that your information is usually or may be used or disclosed to other organisations or persons for a related (or for sensitive information, a directly related purpose);
- the use or disclosure is required or authorised by law;
- the use or disclosure will prevent or lessen a serious and/or imminent threat to somebody’s life, health or safety or to public health or public safety; or
- the disclosure is reasonably necessary for law enforcement functions or for the protection of public revenue.
If we receive your email address because you sent us an email message, the email will only be used or disclosed for the purpose for which you have provided and we will not add your email address to an emailing list or disclose this to anyone else unless you provide us with consent for this purpose.
If we collect your personal information from our website, we will maintain and update your information as reasonably practical and necessary or when you advise us that your personal information has changed.
St Michael’s Hospital is committed to protecting the security of your personal information. We use technologies and processes such as access control procedures, network firewalls, encryption and physical security to protect the privacy of information. We will take all reasonable steps to prevent your information from loss, misuse or alteration.
Staff members associated with website maintenance have access to our website’s backend system. This is password protected. Our website service is also password protected.
If you wish to obtain information about how to access or correct your personal information collected via our website, please refer to Access and Correction at Item 2.7 of this document.