Health Privacy Update – July 2017

Mandatory reporting by health information custodians in Ontario to the IPC will now come into effect October 1, 2017

The new regulations requiring the mandatory reporting of privacy breaches to the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario will come into effect October 1st (not July 1st as we originally expected).

The link to the new regulation is here.

October 1, 2017 – What You Have to Report to the IPC

So, as of October 1st you will now have to report the following to the IPC:

  1. The health information custodian has reasonable grounds to believe that personal health information in the custodian’s custody or control was used or disclosed without authority by a person who knew or ought to have known that they were using or disclosing the information without authority.
  2. The health information custodian has reasonable grounds to believe that personal health information in the custodian’s custody or control was stolen.
  3. The health information custodian has reasonable grounds to believe that, after an initial loss or unauthorized use or disclosure of personal health information in the custodian’s custody or control, the personal health information was or will be further used or disclosed without authority.
  4. The loss or unauthorized use or disclosure of personal health information is part of a pattern of similar losses or unauthorized uses or disclosures of personal health information in the custody or control of the health information custodian.
  5. The health information custodian is required to give notice to a College of an event described in section 17.1 of the Act that relates to a loss or unauthorized use or disclosure of personal health information.
  6. The health information custodian would be required to give notice to a College, if an agent of the health information custodian were a member of the College, of an event described in section 17.1 of the Act that relates to a loss or unauthorized use or disclosure of personal health information.
  7. The health information custodian determines that the loss or unauthorized use or disclosure of personal health information is significant after considering all relevant circumstances, including the following:
    1. Whether the personal health information that was lost or used or disclosed without authority is sensitive.
    2. Whether the loss or unauthorized use or disclosure involved a large volume of personal health information.
    3. Whether the loss or unauthorized use or disclosure involved many individuals’ personal health information.
    4. Whether more than one health information custodian or agent was responsible for the loss or unauthorized use or disclosure of the personal health information.

And then, as of March 1st 2019, you will also have to complete an annual report to the IPC with the following:

  1. Personal health information in the custodian’s custody or control was stolen.
  2. Personal health information in the custodian’s custody or control was lost.
  3. Personal health information in the custodian’s custody or control was used without authority.
  4. Personal health information in the custodian’s custody or control was disclosed without authority.

Update October 2017: The IPC has now issued the format for the report. Can be completed online.