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Patient information

Queensland Ambulance Service (QAS) paramedics utilise wireless technology and mobile computers to record accurate and detailed records of treatment and transportation information for each patient they attend. This record is known as an Electronic Ambulance Report Form (eARF). Prior to the introduction of the electronic patient record, a paper-based ambulance report form was completed and retained.

QAS maintains a database of patient records in line with the Public Records Act 2002. Generally, we have access to records dating back to 1 July 1995. Where a patient is transferred to a hospital, a copy of their eARF is printed on arrival at the receiving hospital and stored securely within the hospital.  This is for the primary purpose of hospital staff in administering ongoing treatment and providing continuum of care for their patient. During transport, a patient may also request a copy of the eARF generated as a result of their QAS treatment and/or transport. 

QAS strictly adheres to the Ambulance Service Act 1991 and the nine national privacy principles outlined in the Information Privacy Act 2009 when collecting, using and disclosing patient information.  Our Privacy Plan sets out details of the types of personal information we hold and how we handle information.

Requesting access to patient information

Administrative Access

QAS patients have a right to apply for access to their own patient records (that is, the electronic Ambulance Report form (eARF)) under the administrative access scheme.  This right extends to legal representatives requesting information on behalf of a patient, or an enduring power of attorney (EPOA) with current power to act as the patient in these circumstances.
Requests can be submitted as follows:

In order for a request to be processed, the following needs to be provided:

  1. If a request is from a patient, evidence of their identity must be provided.  This includes a certified copy of one of the following:
    • birth certificate
    • an extract of a birth certificate
    • a current Australian Passport
    • a current Queensland or interstate driver licence or learner licence issued by the relevant Department of Transport
    • certificate of Naturalisation or Australian Citizenship.
  2. If a request is from an EPOA, relevant EPOA documents and evidence of identity must be provided.
  3. If a request is from a legal representative, authority from the patient, dated within the last six months, must be provided.
  4. In all circumstances, relevant case details must be provided to enable QAS to perform adequate searches:
    • name of patient
    • date of birth of patient
    • date of the incident
    • location of the call-out (street address)
    • facility the patient was transported to (if applicable).
  5. In all circumstances, a fee of $52.00 (as at 1 July 2017) must be provided.  Payment is accepted by bank transfer by arrangement, cheque or money order (made payable to Queensland Ambulance Service).

If it is determined that the request cannot be processed under the administrative access scheme, the fee will be refunded and the application will be dealt with under another access mechanism.

Subpoenas and other court documents

All subpoenas for giving evidence at court are to be served on the individual officer.

All requests for producing documents(including subpoenas) are to be addressed to:
The Director-General
Queensland Health

Conduct Money is $76.00 (payable to Queensland Ambulance Service)

Served at:
33 Charlotte Street
BRISBANE QLD 4000
(Attn: Legal Branch, Level 6)

or

GPO Box 48
BRISBANE QLD 4001
Telephone 3082 0532

Requests for deceased patient information

Deceased person’s information may be requested by lodging a request under the Right to Information Act 2009.  Further information about lodging a compliant RTI request and the process of dealing with these requests including online application is available through the Queensland Health website, at https://www.health.qld.gov.au/system-governance/contact-us/access-info/rti-application/default.asp

Other legislatively-based requests for information

If required by law, some patient information may be provided to a third party.   The third party will need to provide legislative authority and any other relevant information such as notice of claim.

Any queries in relation to requesting patient information should be directed to 3635 3371.

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Last updated 3 July 2017

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