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Privacy Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q:  Who is Canada Health Infoway? 
A: Canada Health Infoway (Infoway) helps to improve the health of Canadians by working with partners to accelerate the development, adoption and effective use of digital health across Canada.  Through our investments, we help deliver better quality and access to care and more efficient delivery of health services for patients and clinicians. Established in 2001, Infoway is an independent, not-for-profit organization funded by the federal government.

Q: What is Infoway’s privacy mandate? 
A: Infoway has previously acted as a strategic investor to foster the development and adoption of digital health information systems in Canada.  Infoway supported the jurisdictions in the area of privacy and security through:

  • Facilitating jurisdictional collaboration by sponsoring the Pan- Canadian Privacy Forum and the Pan-Canadian Health Information Privacy Group
  • Requiring projects that involved personal health information conduct Privacy Impact Assessments
  • Raising awareness of privacy and security issues through thought leadership

The Privacy Office is in the process of adapting Infoway’s privacy program, to support the organizations changing role and mandate from strategic investor to delivery and operation. 

Q: What are the Privacy Forum and Health Information Privacy Group?
A: The Privacy Forum, established in 2007 and sponsored by Infoway, includes representatives from each federal/provincial/territorial Ministry of Health and/or e-Health agency as well as each jurisdictional privacy oversight body. The Forum offers a mechanism for members to share and leverage their collective knowledge and experience on privacy matters in the development of digital health initiatives.

Infoway also sponsors the Health Information Privacy Group (HIPG). Established in 2008, this group is made up of health ministry and e-Health agency representatives and focuses on the development of common approaches to information governance issues as they pertain to privacy in digital health information systems.

Q: Does Infoway hold or manage personal health information? 
A: Historically, Infoway has not managed any personal health information or digital health solutions that use personal health information.  Traditionally, this has been done by the jurisdictions and health delivery organizations.

Infoway is working with Health Canada, the provinces and territories, and industry stakeholders to create, operate and maintain a multi-jurisdiction e-prescribing service – PrescribeIT. 

To learn more about PrescribeIT, please click here.

To receive a copy of the Draft PrescribeIT Privacy Policy, please This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Q: Can I see the information Infoway collects about me?
A: Individuals requesting access to their personal health information will be directed to those who originally collected the information – healthcare providers who are directly involved in the patients care and treatment (e.g., your doctor or other health care organization).  This is consistent with and supported by the health information privacy and e-health laws found in the jurisdictions.  

Q: Who can I contact if I need more information on privacy as it relates to digital health initiatives?
A: For specific privacy queries related to your jurisdiction, please contact your ministry or department of health.

Q: Who can I speak to if I have questions or complaints about Infoway’s information practices and privacy program? 
A: Questions related to Infoway’s information practices, and/or privacy program should be directed to:

Chief Privacy Officer
Canada Health Infoway
150 King St. W, Suite 1300
Toronto, On M5H 1J9
416 979 4606
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Any individual may submit a concern or complaint about Infoway’s information practices to the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario by contacting:

Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner/Ontario
2 Bloor Street East, Suite 1400
Toronto, ON M4W 1A8

Telephone: 416 326 3333 or 1 800 387 0073 
TDD/TTY: 416 325 7539
FAX: 416 325 9195

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