The Australian Parliament has made important changes to My Health Record laws.
These new laws mean stronger privacy protections for young people aged 14-17 years.
If you are 14 years or older, parents will no longer have access to your My Health Record unless you invite them.
Technical changes to the My Health Record system to reflect these new laws were implemented on 4 February 2019. On this date, all existing authorised representatives for teenagers over the age of 14 were removed from their teenager’s record.
Manage your own record from age 14
Once you turn 14, you can manage your own record and your parent or legal guardian will no longer have access to it. If you still want them to have access, you can invite them to be your nominated representative.
If you don’t have a My Health Record, you can register for one at any time.
Steps to manage your own My Health Record
To manage your My Health Record, you will need to:
- Create a myGov account or sign in to your existing myGov account. You can do this at my.gov.au.
- Verify your identity using your Medicare number, name, address, date of birth and gender. You may be asked questions such as the date of your last doctor’s visit.
- Link your My Health Record to your myGov account, and set it up.
If you need assistance, you can call 1800 723 471. The Help line is free from most mobile carriers.
Where do I find my Medicare number?
If you are on a parent’s Medicare card, your Medicare number will be on the card. You will also need to know your Individual Reference Number, which is the number that appears next to your name on the card.
If you are 15 years or older, you may already have your own Medicare number and card.
If you don’t know your Medicare number, contact Medicare so they can give it to you.
What information is in My Health Record?
In your record, there may be around two years’ of Medicare claims such as your doctor’s visits, any medicines prescribed for you under the PBS scheme and data from the Australian Immunisation Register about immunisations you have had.
There may also be medical documents uploaded by a doctor, nurse or hospital, medicine dispense records uploaded by a pharmacist, or test results uploaded by a hospital or pathology lab.
How can I control what a doctor or hospital can see in my record?
In a medical emergency, your doctors can access your important health information when time is critical, such as allergies, medicines and immunisations to help them give you the best possible treatment and care.
When you are under 14
Before the age of 14, your parent or guardian manages your record for you. They can look at your record and see health information about you uploaded by your doctor, nurse or specialist and Medicare. They can also see your medical tests and prescriptions, add and remove information, and set privacy controls in your record.
Under new privacy laws, once you turn 14, all authorised representatives including parents will automatically be removed from your record.
Your parents will no longer have access to your My Health Record unless you invite them.
What if I don’t want a document uploaded to my record?
If you are under 14, and you are concerned about particular medical document being uploaded to your record that your parent or guardian might see, let your doctor, nurse or pharmacist know you don’t want those documents uploaded to your My Health Record.
If my parents have already opted me out of having a My Health Record, can I still get one?
If you are 14 years or over, you can register for a My Health Record at any time, even if your parent or guardian previously opted you out.