Manitoba Ombudsman releases comment on personal health information privacy and the provision of spiritual care to patientsReturn to listing
Sep 8, 2004
A comment on information privacy and the provision of spiritual care to patients in Manitoba health care facilities under The Personal Health Information Act (PHIA) has been released by Manitoba Ombudsman, Barry Tuckett.
The Ombudsman's observations are further to the comment he issued in late 2001 and consider the matter in relation to the amendment of PHIA through the passage of The Personal Health Information Act (Spiritual Health) by the Manitoba Legislature and royal assent on June 10, 2004 . The definition of "health care" now expressly includes spiritual care by defining "health" as "the condition of being sound in mind, body and spirit".
"It is our understanding that, with this amendment, spiritual care services are clearly subject to PHIA," said the Ombudsman, "and are subject to the same information privacy practices governing the provision of other health care services offered by a health care facility." This includes the provision of spiritual care pursuant to a request by the patient or a referral similar to that made for other health care services. "The collection, use or disclosure of personal health information must also be limited to the minimum amount needed to achieve the purpose," he said.
The full text of the Ombudsman's comment is attached.