This page explains how we use the information you provide to us as part of your treatment, and sets out the way we protect your privacy as we do so.

The information you share with us is held in both a paper record and in electronic systems. The main purpose we collect information from you is for your care and treatment, but there are other related purposes such as administration aspects associated with your care and the maintenance of recording the health outcomes of our patients.

You do not have to provide information to us, but doing so will help us provide a more effective and efficient service not only to you, but to all our clients.

Who may have access?

There are many different people within our hospital who need to access your records to help provide your care. These include, for example, administration staff who may need to organise your outpatient appointments, as well as staff from our Quality service who keep track on how well we are providing services to you.

We do allow approved people from outside our organisation to have access to your electronic health information. Access to the electronic information systems which holds our patient information is given only to people who have our approval.

Who do we share your information with?

We communicate your health information to other health providers who are contributing to your care and treatment. In most cases, we provide to them copies of information we hold.

Some of your information is sent directly to your GP such as discharge summaries and clinic letters. We also send information to the Primary Health Organisation (PHO) which is responsible for assisting GPs in our region to manage their businesses.

Your information may be used for research and all research projects are approved by an ethics committee. They decide if your specific consent is required to use the information.

Many research projects involve a review of past information and are not clinical trials.

Some government agencies have a legal right to access your information. Examples include the Ministry for Children Oranga Tamariki, New Zealand Police and the Coroner’s office.If we are given an appropriate formal request we must comply with it.

Your health information may be sent to other organisations which provide quality assurance and audit to help us benchmark and improve our care for you.This information is almost always anonymised, so it cannot identify you.

Where do we store your electronic records?

Most of our electronically held patient information is stored in data centres located on Hospital premises. For critical systems, patient information may also be stored in a data centre away from the hospital premises to ensure the information is not lost in the event of a disaster.

Sometimes our patient information is stored in systems that are not owned by our organisation or held on our premises. For eample, your hospital radiology reports and images are sent to a regional radiology system so they can be viewed by other health care providers alongside any other images of you held by other public hospitals. Any information stored away from the hospital is done in accordance with New Zealand government directives. These require us to conduct security and privacy assessments with the external vendors to ensure that your privacy rights are always maintained.

What we will never do with your information

  • We will never share your information with any person or organisation unless we are legally required or allowed to do so.
  • We will never sell any of your information to any organisation or person.
  • We would not give your information to any insurance or other commercial company without your specific permission to do so.

How long do we keep your information?

We are legally required to keep all medical information for at least 10 years after the date of your last access to our services. There is a legal requirement that we hold some health information (Paediatric, Maternal care and Mental Health information) for 20 years.

After that time we dispose of your information in accordance with the Public Records Act 2005 by either sending the information to you or by destroying it.

Your rights and choices

We are happy to provide you with access to any personal information that we hold about you.If it is wrong, please ask us to correct it.To ask for access or correction, please email Medical Records team at or talk directly to someone in your treatment team.

Our transparency statement

Read more about how we collect, use and share information about the people we provide health services to. This statement applies to information gathered by us, our contractors, or any other third parties engaged by us.

Last updated 15 December 2023.