Guide to the Ontario Personal Health Information Protection Act

A Practical Guide for Health Care Providers

Overview

Ontario’s new Personal Health Information Protection Act, 2004 (PHIPA), which came into effect on November 1, 2004, prescribes comprehensive rules for the collection, use, and disclosure of personal health information in all types of health care settings, including hospitals, psychiatric facilities, laboratories, ambulance services, and nursing homes. It applies to all regulated health professionals and to non-regulated health professionals who provide health care for payment, such as acupuncturists, psychotherapists, and ultrasonographers.

The Guide to the Ontario Personal Health Information Protection Act is a comprehensive, practical resource for all health care providers about this complex new legislation. Written in plain language, it provides a detailed, well-organized explanation of the Act and regulations and how they apply to and affect all health care settings. It sets out the obligations of health information custodians under PHIPA; the application of the law to specific health sectors; the rules for disclosing personal health information outside Ontario; the right of access by patients to their own records of personal health information; the obligations of health information custodians to provide patient access and the duty to correct records; the role and powers of the Information and Privacy Commissioner; and remedies for breaches of the legislation and offences.

The book also includes a brief practical guide to the Quality of Care Information Protection Act, 2004, which was passed with PHIPA and comes into force at the same time. The Guide is written by the three counsel to the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care who were instrumental in developing the legislation and leading it through the legislative process. The full text of the Act and regulations are included as appendices.

Table of Contents

Foreword by the Hon. Horace Krever
Preface

Chapter 1: Introduction
Chapter 2: Application of the Legislation: Who and What Is Covered?
Chapter 3: How PHIPA Works with Other Law
Chapter 4: Obligations of Health Information Custodians
Chapter 5: Consent
Chapter 6: Substitute Decision-making
Chapter 7: General Limits on Collections, Uses, and Disclosures
Chapter 8: Collection of Personal Health Information
Chapter 9: Use of Personal Health Information
Chapter 10: Disclosure of Personal Health Information
Chapter 11: Health Research and Health System Planning and Analysis
Chapter 12: Rules for Recipients of Personal Health Information from Health Information Custodians
Chapter 13: Patient’s Right of Access to Records of Personal Health Information
Chapter 14: Correction of Personal Health Information Records
Chapter 15: The Enforcement of PHIPA
Chapter 16: PHIPA: Regulation-making Powers
Chapter 17: Quality of Care Information Protection
APPENDIX 1: Glossary of Terms Defined in or Relating to PHIPA
APPENDIX 2: Ten Things to Know to Make Compliance with PHIPA Easier
APPENDIX 3: Online PHIPA Resources
APPENDIX 4: Personal Health Information Protection Act, 2004
APPENDIX 5: Ontario Regulation 329/04 under PHIPA
APPENDIX 6: Quality of Care Information Protection Act, 2004
APPENDIX 7: Ontario Regulation 297/04 under QCIPA
APPENDIX 8: Ontario Regulation 330/04 under QCIPA

Table of Statutes, Bills, Regulations, and Abbreviations
Table of Cases
Index
About the Authors