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Privacy and managing health information in general practice

Use and disclosure of health information

Use for training and education purposes

Last revised: 24 May 2023

Use for training and education purposes

Patients are often unaware their health information might be used for training and education purposes.

Without consent, it might be unreasonable for GPs to expect patients to permit their health information to be used. However, this expectation might be influenced by the nature of the training activity. For example, filming a family therapy session is highly likely to require express consent. In contrast, GPs are more likely to rely on implied consent for activities more closely linked to the provision of healthcare services, such as reflective discussion with peers or for training registrars.

Ideally, information should be de-identified before it is used for training, quality assurance or audit exercises. GPs should consider whether to include consent for training and education purposes on their patient registration forms to avoid this becoming an issue.

Your practice is encouraged to include information about these activities and clinical audits in your practice policy on privacy and managing health information. If a practice intends to use de-identified information, it is still important to notify patients of this in your privacy policy.

 

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