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Last updated 03 April 2016

Participation Trials

Legislative changes have been made to the My Health Records Act 2012 which allow the system to be operated on an opt-out basis.

These changes took effect on 27 November 2015.

What has changed?

Since it began in 2012, the My Health Record system has operated on an opt-in basis for individuals.  This means that if individuals want a My Health Record, they need to apply to the My Health Record System Operator.

The Minister now has authority to operate the system on an opt-out basis – first through trials.  With the agreement of Australian health ministers, the Minister has initiated trials through the My Health Records (Opt-out Trials) Rule 2016 which took effect on 9 February 2016.

The Minister also has authority to implement opt-out nationally but only if the opt-out trials provide evidence demonstrating the value of an opt-out system and with the agreement of the Australian Government.

What is an opt-out system?

In an opt-out system, individuals are automatically registered for a My Health Record without the need to apply.  Individuals can choose to opt-out if they don’t want a My Health Record.  In that case a My Health Record will not be created.

If an individual does not opt-out, they will be able to manage the information in their My Health Record by:

  • setting access controls restricting access to their My Health Record entirely or restricting access to certain information in their My Health Record;
  • requesting that their healthcare provider not upload certain information or documents to their My Health Record, in which case the healthcare provider must not upload that information or those documents;
  • requesting that their Medicare data not be included in their My Health Record, in which case Medicare will not make the data available to the System Operator;
  • monitoring activity in their My Health Record using the audit log or via electronic messages alerting them that someone has accessed their My Health Record;
  • removing documents from their My Health Record;
  • making a complaint if they consider there has been a breach of privacy; and
  • cancelling their My Health Record.

Where are these trials being conducted?

Information about the locations of the trials is available on I have received a letter page.

Why has this change been made?

The change implements a Government decision to conduct trials.  Further information is available I have received a letter page.

Last updated 03 April 2016