SmartHealth privacy statement

Your privacy

Your privacy is important to us. This document provides you with details about SmartHealth and how your information will be used and kept secure.  In this document “we”, “us” or “our” refers to Waikato DHB.

Information that you provide or that your clinicians provide to you while using SmartHealth services will be used to deliver health information and services to you and provide you with better care.

What is "SmartHealth"?

Waikato DHB’s SmartHealth system, which includes HealthTap, is a free online platform and mobile app which connects with a range of health services using your smart phone, tablet device or home computer.

SmartHealth enables you to:

  • access a knowledge base of doctor-approved health information on topics, conditions, treatment and research
  • anonymously ask qualified clinicians questions
  • have “out of hours” doctor consultations by video, voice or text chat
  • have scheduled consultations with a clinician by video, voice or text chat, if appropriate for your condition  
  • record and store information from approved health monitoring equipment such as approved scales or blood pressure cuffs, which can help clinicians monitor your health and make informed care decisions during a SmartHealth consultation.

Profile information

When you sign up to use SmartHealth, you will be asked to provide a range of information about yourself. This information along with your email address and password becomes your "Profile".

The information that you will be asked for includes:

  • identifying information (e.g. your name and date of birth)
  • contact details (e.g. your email address) - your email address must be a unique email address that only you use, so that you can securely login to the system and information can be securely emailed to you
  • information about your lifestyle (e.g. your smoking status and your use of alcohol)
  • information about your medical history (e.g. allergies, conditions, or past surgeries).

The minimum information that you must provide in order to use SmartHealth services is your name, email address and password. Giving more information will help your clinicians provide you with better services and help you get more accurate information when using some of the self-service options within SmartHealth.

Consults information

A "consult" within the SmartHealth system will allow you to have either a video (using a computer, a video camera and a microphone) consultation or a typed / text consultation with a clinician (either as part of the “out of hours” service or at a scheduled time).

SmartHealth holds information about any upcoming appointments you have scheduled with clinicians so that reminders can be sent to both parties. SmartHealth also keeps a record of every consult you have had. This record includes the transcript of any text communication and the date, time, and clinician consulted. This information is always available and displayed to you in your SmartHealth profile. The record of your last consult is also made available to the clinician. SmartHealth does not store copies of your video consults.

Your clinician can update information about the consultation within your SmartHealth record (e.g. information the clinician provided during the consultation such as diagnosis or treatment). This information will be stored in the SmartHealth system and may also be sent to update your clinical record maintained at Waikato DHB and the General Practice centre that you’re registered with. This is just as if the clinician saw you in person.

Q&A information

SmartHealth enables you to anonymously type in new questions that can then be answered by one or more qualified clinicians. Don’t include information that identifies you (like your name) in questions posted in the Q&A/Inform area. Your SmartHealth profile keeps and displays a records all of the questions you have asked. The records show what the question was, when it was asked, and how many responses have been received.  Remember, clinicians answering these questions will not see your profile, so if your question requires a personal response, please do an online consult.

Cookies information

The SmartHealth system uses cookies. A cookie is a file that's stored on your computer or device. It contains the address of the Web site and codes that your internet browser sends back to the Web site each time you visit a page there. Cookies from SmartHealth do not contain personal information. They are useful in making your experience with SmartHealth a better experience. When you browse the Web and access a Web page, the Web server needs to know who you are if you want to do things that require logging in or putting items in a virtual shopping cart or completing any other process that requires that the Web site remember information about you as you move from page to page.

How will your information be used?

The information collected about you on SmartHealth will be used for the following purposes.

  • To provide you with general health and lifestyle information on your home page tailored to your profile information.
  • To provide you with reminders (email and mobile notifications) to help you stay engaged with your health. You can manage the frequency and types of communications you receive by updating your account settings.
  • By clinicians to better provide you with relevant health information and treatment during your virtual consultation(s).
  • For administrative and quality improvement purposes.
  • To carry out teaching and research.

How and where will your information be stored?

The information that you provide in your profile along with the information that the clinicians record while providing you services via SmartHealth will be stored in one or more of the following places.

  • On a private, safe and highly secured computer storage system in the United States of America (called a "Cloud"). This system meets the information security standards of the United States of America and New Zealand. The Cloud storage system is managed on behalf of Waikato DHB by HealthTap(external link) 
  • On the secure clinical records systems maintained by Waikato DHB. The same as if you met with a clinician in person.
  • On the secure clinical records systems of your General Practice centre, if you are registered with one of these organisations. The same as if you met with a GP in person.

How long will your information be stored?

In order to meet both the New Zealand government and the Waikato DHB regulations, your information will be stored for up to 20 years following the date of your last treatment or care.

Who has access to your information?

Generally only your team of clinicians from Waikato DHB and your General Practice centre will have access to your information on SmartHealth. However, on occasion HealthTap staff, your General Practice centre staff or others authorised by the Waikato DHB may also need to access your information to ensure that the system is working correctly, to fix any issues that might arise and/or to respond to any complaints, questions or concerns.

How do I access my own information or find out more?

You have a right to access and request the correction of your information.  You can do this in your own profile by logging in with your password.  Remember though, your clinician(s) will not automatically know if you change your own information.  So make sure you tell them during your consultation if you change something important.

If you want to access or correct the information that Waikato DHB holds about you, or if you have any other questions about SmartHealth, you can ask your clinician(s) or email smarthealth@waikatodhb.health.nz.