Welp, we’re almost there, folks. You’ve now got until Thursday night (technically 3am on Friday morning) to opt-out of a My Health Record before one is automatically created for you. If you’re a little behind on why you might want to consider withdrawing your consent for such a thing, allow me to remind you.
The system is designed to allow doctors and patients to upload medical information like prescriptions, allergies, medical summaries, and other health records which can then be accessed by medical professionals depending on the user’s preferences. It sounds great in theory, but with the Government’s lackluster track record with online services, it becomes a question of whether you feel comfortable with your sensitive information being stored and accessed online.
And look, I’m not your dad or anything, but I reckon it’s something you should give a shit about, particularly because the Government still hasn’t given a definitive answer on how the data will be managed and exactly who can access it. In fact, law enforcement can access your files without the need for a court order, something which is being debated in the Senate this week, and while it’s expected to change for the better, there are still a lot of question marks around the system and who can access what.
No matter how secure an online system claims to be, cybersecurity experts warn that none is completely safe from attacks or breaches. And on the other side of the fence, who’s to say that insurers won’t be able to access this information at some point down the road, regardless of whether or not the Government says they can’t. Things like this can change and when they do, you might not have a say in the matter.
Earlier this year, online appointment booking app, HealthEngine, was revealed to be selling patient data to third parties, including law firms, making it the online storage equivalent of a wet manilla folder.
If you’re keen to opt out before you have no choice, you can do so by heading over to the My Health Record website and following the prompts. It’s honestly a piece of piss and will take you less than ten minutes.Image: Duke Nukem 3D