The Health Information Act (HIA) came into force on April 25, 2001. Associated regulations include the Health Information Regulation, Alberta Electronic Health Record Regulation and Designation Regulation.
HIA provides individuals with the right to request access to their own health information in the custody or under the control of health custodians while providing custodians with a framework for conducting the collection, use and disclosure of health information.
HIA also gives individuals the right to request corrections and to have custodians consider their wishes regarding how much of their health information is disclosed or made accessible through Alberta Netcare, the province's electronic health record system.
Custodians subject to HIA include:
- Alberta Health (government department)
- Alberta Health Services (regional health authority)
- Covenant Health (hospital board)
- Nursing homes
- Registered nurses
- Dental hygienists
In addition to regulating information access, collection, use and disclosure practices of custodians, HIA also covers the actions of affiliates. Affiliates include employees, volunteers, contractors and agencies under contract to a custodian. Some examples of affiliates can include reception and nursing staff at a doctor's office, pharmacy technicians, or information desk and food service workers in a hospital. Ultimately, custodians are responsible for the information collected, used or disclosed by their affiliates.