THERE has been a lot of confusion around the My Health Record scheme but time is running out for those who want to opt out.
The minister's announcement comes after the Senate today backed a two-month extension for Australians seeking to opt out of My Health Record.
Labor will push to extend the opt-out deadline for the controversial My Health Record system by 12 months.
"Today the Government worked with the Senate crossbench to extend the opt-out period for #MyHealthRecord", Mr Hunt wrote on Twitter.
"The Guardian reported that the motion calls for the opt-out period to be extended 'until the legislation and any amendments are passed, outstanding privacy and security issues are addressed and public confidence in this important reform is restored".
It's not just your doctors who can see these health details; almost 700,000 health practitioners including your dietitian, podiatrist or occupational therapist can see these details if they are registered to use the system unless you set up access controls.
Australians did have until tomorrow, November 15, to opt out of the My Health Record scheme, or else a record would have automatically been created for them.
"The opt-out period must not end until the clean-up legislation has passed the Parliament".
"Anyone who has legitimate concerns over My Health Record now has little choice but to opt out until these problems are addressed".
Hunt said more than six million people already had a My Health Record and over 14,000 healthcare professional organisations were connected.
The amendment wouldn't have become law before Thursday night's deadline, prompting the minister to step in and extend the date.
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A further 88 cases occurred between July 2012 and June this year, including at least eight cases where an unauthorised third party had access to records.
A My Health Record means all their health information will be available in one place, and can be easily accessed by doctors, specialists or hospitals. "My Health Record will protect and save lives".
"In addition, they can subsequently delete certain parts of their records once they have been upload".
There will be regular security audits of My Health Record but any documents downloaded or created by a doctor could also be stored on their local IT system and the security of this will depend on their system.
You have until Thursday to opt out of the My Health Record.
"We are experiencing high demand, which has slowed the system down, and some people have experienced difficulties opting out this morning", the agency said.
Among those voicing their concerns was the Australian Rail Tram and Bus Industry Union (RTBU), which said it was anxious that the system would make it easier for employers, as they have in the past, to demand access to health records.
Under the Healthcare Identifiers Act 2010 (the Act), specifically subsection 14 (2), healthcare providers can not use a healthcare identifier for employment and insurance purposes, and as a outcome can not access an individual's MHR for such purposes.
You could have extended the opt-out period any time you liked.
There are concerns that domestic violence perpetrators may be able to use their access to their children's My Health Record to track down their partners who may be in hiding and fear for their safety.
Victims of domestic violence would also be better protected and private health insurers would be unable to access data even when it had been de-identified.
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