Personal Health Information

Ontario has a law called the Personal Health Information and Protection Act, 2004 that protects your personal health information.

Public Health Services is committed to upholding that law by protecting and securing your personal health information as part of delivering quality health care programs and services.

Collection, use and sharing of personal health information

Public Health Services may need to collect your personal health information in order to provide you with programs and services. Public Health staff collects your personal health information from:

  • you directly
  • your substitute decision-maker
  • other sources, with your consent

At times Public Health Services staff may need to collect your personal health information from other sources without your consent when required or permitted by law.

The type of information collected may include your name, address, phone number, date of birth, Ontario health insurance number, health and health care history and information for payment for health care, when required, for certain public health services.

Your personal health information may be collected, used and shared with other health care providers as reasonably necessary to:

  • Assist or provide you with health care
  • Plan or deliver public health programs and services
  • Administer and monitor public health programs
  • Meet the legal requirements of the Medical Officer of Health and Board of Health to comply with the Health Protection and Promotion Act, 1990
  • Conduct continuous quality improvement activities
  • Compile statistics for programming, surveillance or research (generic information only – you will not be identified)
  • Teach employees and students
  • Arrange payment for your treatment and care
  • Comply with legal and regulatory requirements and fulfil other activities required or permitted by law

We will require additional consent from you or your substitute decision-maker if we need to share your information for purposes other than those listed above, unless the law allows or requires us to give out your information without your permission.

Your rights

You or your substitute decision-maker has the right:

  • To see and receive a copy of your personal health information
  • To ask us to correct any inaccurate or incomplete personal health information
  • To ask us not to give out your personal health information to other health care providers – unless required or permitted by law to do so
  • To be told if your personal health information has been stolen, lost or improperly accessed

Contact us

The Medical Officer of Health is the Health Information Custodian for Public Health Services.

If you have questions or wish to request access to, or correction of your personal health information:

  • contact your Public Health Services staff.

If you have questions or concerns about our privacy practices:

  • call the Office of the Medical Officer of Health at 905-546-2424 ext. 3502.

Information Privacy Commissioner of Ontario

You have the right to make a complaint with the Information Privacy Commissioner of Ontario if you think we have violated your privacy rights at:

Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario
2 Bloor Street East, Suite 1400 Toronto, Ontario M4W 1A8
Phone: 416-326-3333 Toll free phone: 1-800-387-0073
TDD/TTY: 416-325-7