Privacy Policy

Policy

The College and Association of Registered Nurses of Alberta (CARNA) is committed to maintaining the accuracy, confidentiality and security of the personal information collected from members, applicants, public council representatives and employees.

Accountability

CARNA is committed to protecting all of the personal information that is shared with us. The Personal Information Protection Act (PIPA) is provincial legislation intended to protect the privacy of Albertans. The policies and practices of CARNA have been reviewed to ensure they meet the requirements of this legislation. CARNA has designated one person with the role and responsibilities of a privacy officer. This officer is responsible for CARNA's compliance with privacy legislation.

Purpose

The primary collection of member information is through registration and renewal. This information is used for determining eligibility for registration as well as to provide membership benefits through CARNA (e.g. sending Alberta RN magazine or other information).

  • Members of CARNA are automatically members of the Canadian Nurses Association (CNA) and the name and address of each member is supplied to them to confer membership benefits through CNA (e.g. CNPS coverage). By becoming a member of CARNA, the member is consenting to the collection and use of personal contact information for the purpose of providing membership benefits through both organizations. The information supplied to CNA will remain confidential to CNA as provided for in their privacy policy.
  • Information is shared with the Alberta Registered Nurses Educational Trust (ARNET) in order for ARNET staff to determine eligibility for funding applications.
  • Aggregate information is also provided to Statistics Canada though the Canadian Institute for Health Information as required by the Statistics Bureau Act.
  • Personal information may also be collected through our practice consultation calls or other member services and may be used in aggregate, non-identifiable form for reporting purposes.

Consent

Contact and personal information is not shared with unaffiliated third parties except those we are satisfied are legitimately requesting the information (such as when permitted or required by law).

Members and applicants have the option of consenting to release their contact information to third parties that participate in research relevant to nurses, provide information on education and career opportunities, member benefits, specialty practice groups and advisories applicable to the nursing profession. Release of information is subject to approval by CARNA once conditions have been met as outlined in our Access to Information policy.

Other uses of personal information will be identified either prior to or at the time the information is collected. CARNA will communicate verbally, electronically or in writing the primary purpose of collecting personal information outside of those listed above. Information collected for aggregate use by departments of CARNA is defined in our Department-Specific Policies for Maintaining Confidentiality document.

Limiting Collection

CARNA limits the collection of personal information to those elements required to determine eligibility for registration, maintain membership and provide statistical data or research support relevant to health and the nursing community. Prospective employees and employee information is collected for the purposes of determining, offering and maintaining employment with CARNA.

The Health Professions Act (HPA) and the Registered Nurses Profession Regulation outline the requirements for determining eligibility for registration, which include collecting information regarding the member or applicant's fitness to practice, criminal record, employer references and verification of their registration in other jurisdictions. This information is collected by CARNA during the application for initial registration and annual application for renewal of registration.

Disclosure and Retention

CARNA shall not use or disclose personal information for purposes other than those identified unless consent has been received or it is required or permitted by law or legislation.

Retention policies have been developed for the organization based on the relevant legislation which includes the Health Professions Act, Personal Information Protection Act and requirements from Canada Revenue Agency.

Accuracy

Requests for updates or changes to personal information can be made to the registration department of CARNA for members and applicants.

Sharing and Safeguards

All personal information is safeguarded with appropriate security measures and used only for the purposes stated in this policy and only that information which is necessary is released.

The Health Professions Act (HPA) includes a number of requirements for regulatory colleges to share information, which are intended to provide additional transparency and openness from health professions to the public.

Public access to information

Under HPA, when a member of the public asks for information about a regulated member and specifies the member by name, CARNA must provide the following information:

  • the member's registration number
  • any conditions imposed on the member's practice permit
  • whether the member's practice permit has been suspended, cancelled or restricted to a specific time frame
  • the member's practice specialization recognized by the college
  • whether or not the member is authorized to provide a restricted activity normally provided by regulated CARNA members

Notification of conditions on practice permits

If conditions are imposed on a member's practice permit, the registrar must notify the following:

  • the member's employer(s) (including anyone who employs the member as a consultant, contractor or volunteer)
  • the health authority where the member provides services
  • the hospital if the member is a member of the hospital's professional staff
  • the Minister of Health and Wellness or any organization that administers the payment of fees for the professional services the member provides, and
  • another health professional college if the registrar knows that the regulated member is also a member of the other college

If the conditions are removed or changed, CARNA will notify the applicable parties.

Discipline Hearings

All HPA hearings are open to the public unless a Hearing Tribunal orders otherwise at the commencement of a hearing. To obtain the date of a disciplinary hearing, a member of the public may call during business hours, name the regulated member whose hearing they wish to attend and if there is a scheduled date, the information will be provided.

Any member of the public may request disciplinary information about a regulated member. Only the decision and the testimony from the transcript is releasable for a period of five years after the hearing date. A request must be made in writing and upon receipt of payment of the administration and reproduction costs, a copy the decision and testimony will be released. The Conduct department will document who has received the information.

Openness

CARNA will share information on the policies and procedures that apply to the management of personal information when requested by any member of the public.

Individual Access

CARNA shall give individuals access to their information in the custody of CARNA upon written request and production of verification of identity. CARNA has 45 days to provide access to the personal information on file. There may be a reasonable fee charged for access or reproduction of information based on a cost recovery basis. Certain information may be withheld according to the provisions of PIPA. If CARNA cannot provide the personal information, the reasons for denying access will be identified. Request to access information must be received in written form by completing the Request to Access Personal Information in the Custody and Control of CARNA form and forwarding to the attention of the Privacy Officer.

An individual shall be able to challenge the accuracy and completeness of their personal information and request to have it amended if appropriate. Individuals can request access by contacting the privacy officer.

Challenging Compliance

Concerns or complaints regarding CARNA compliance within privacy policy should be directed to:

Privacy Officer
College and Association of Registered Nurses of Alberta
11620 – 168 Street
Edmonton, AB T5M 4A6
Tel: (780) 451-0043
Fax: (780) 452-3276
E-mail: privacyofficer@nurses.ab.ca

If dissatisfied with the manner in which the complaint was handled, an individual may contact the following:

Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Alberta

AMEC Place
2460-801 – 6th Avenue SW
Calgary, Alberta
T2P 3W2

For a copy of the complete Personal Information Protection Act Policy including related policies and forms mentioned please contact the privacy officer.