Accessing Queensland Health Records: Demystifying the Process

William Deicke

William Deicke

Legal Practitioner

The past year has served as a timely reminder of the bravery and selflessness of our frontline healthcare workers. At Littles, we see first-hand the incredible diligence and professionalism that hospital workers, along with first responders, demonstrate when providing care to those involved in a motor vehicle or workplace accident. 

Health Records

Queensland Health records can serve as important pieces of evidence for Claimants pursuing a claim for damages as a result of a motor vehicle or workplace accident, given the contemporaneous nature  of the documents found within these records.

When requesting records from Queensland Health on behalf of our clients, two legislative/policy regimes may be enlivened: –

  1. Queensland Health Administrative Access Policy; and
  2. Information Privacy Act 2009 (Qld).

The Queensland Health Administrative Access Policy

The Queensland Health Administrative Access Policy provides a framework for individuals to access their health records through a third party, such as their legal representative. The authority and identification requirements for such a request are stringently applied. The individual must provide a duly executed authority specifying the information that the individual consents to being released to their legal representative. The request must also be accompanied by a certified copy of the individual’s photographic identification, such as a Driver License or passport.

The Information Privacy Act 2009 (Qld) was enacted in recognition of the importance of protecting individual’s personal information. It sets out a number of ‘privacy principles’ that dictate how Queensland Government agencies, such as Queensland Health, collect, store, use, and disclose personal information.

Which of the two regimes applies to a request depends on what is contained within the requested records. If the records are non-sensitive in nature (i.e. orthopaedic or physical injuries), then the Queensland Health Administrative Access Policy applies. If the records are sensitive in nature (i.e. mental health records, details of sensitive matters like sexual assault) then the Information Privacy Act 2009 (Qld) is enlivened. In our staff’s experience, wait times for records differ depending on which regime applies to the request.

Having trouble navigating the procedural red tape following an accident? Don’t hesitate to give Littles a call at 1800 548 853 for assistance.

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