Health Information Act Resources
Amendments to Alberta's Health Information Act:
What it means to RN/NPs
The Health Information Act (HIA) deals with complex issues concerning the collection, use, disclosure and protection of health information used in the health-care system. On September 1, 2010 amendments to Alberta's HIA came into force. Until the most recent amendments, the Act only applied to health services paid for under the Alberta Health Care Insurance Plan. Under the amended Act, the Act applies to all health information collected, used and disclosed, by custodians, in relation to a health service regardless of how it is paid for. "Health information" and "health services" have specific, defined meanings under the Act.
The associated HIA Regulation designates who are custodians under the Act. Regulated members of specific health professions have been designated as custodians.
The HIA amendments will apply to regulated members of the College and Association of Registered Nurses of Alberta (CARNA) on September 1, 2011. All regulated members of CARNA will be custodians for the purposes of the HIA unless they are an affiliate of another custodian.
Examples of custodians include:
- Alberta Health Services
- Covenant Health
- Nursing home operators
- Therefore, registered nurses employed by these organizations are affiliates.
An "affiliate" is:
an individual employed by a custodian, a person who performs a service for a custodian as an appointee, volunteer or student or under a contract or agency relationship with the custodian, and a health services provider who is exercising the right to admit and treat patients at a hospital as defined in the Hospitals Act.
Resources for RNs and NPs
- Privacy and Management of Health Information: Standards for CARNA’s Regulated Members (September 2011)
- CARNA Nursing Practice Standards and the Code of Ethics for Registered Nurses - Outline of the broad professional accountability of regulated members on protection of personal health information
- CNA fact sheet on Privacy of Personal Health Information
- CNPS Info Law: Confidentiality of Health Information
- The Health Information Act
- Health Information Regulation
- Electronic Health Record Regulation
- Privacy Impact Assessment Requirements