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Lecture 6

5035LAW Lecture Notes - Lecture 6: Australian Red Cross, Objective Test, Blood Transfusion

2 pages29 viewsSummer 2016

Department
Law
Course Code
5035LAW
Professor
Colleen Davis
Lecture
6

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CONFIDENTIAL INFORMATION
Confidentiality -protects information given in confidence
-Law, common law, equity and some statutes
-Not absolute
-Exceptions
oSevere public health or safety
-Duty within equity
-Contract between patient and doctor
-Implied term of confidentiality
AMA Code of
Ethics
-Maintain confidentiality
-Exceptions
oSerious risk to patient or to other
oRequired by law
oApproved research
oOr other overwhelming societal interests
-Duty of confidence
-Tension between patient confidentiality and disclosure of information for public interest context
oRWH v General Pract Board Vic 2006
found child possibly drawfism – hysterical and suicidal demanding pregnancy be
terminated
all doctors and psychologists etc agreed she would kill herself if not abortion occurred
many problems arose and many people (incl medical board) got involved asking coroner
and others for information that the patient had not given consent for
privacy interest
Action -torts
oconsequences failed to take or took incorrectly
ocould result in some harm
oFurness v Fitchett
Nervous shock
Doctor gave woman’s husband a certificate for mental health for solicitor
without her knowledge
Certificate arose in divorce proceedings
-Contract
oTerms in contract explain confidentiality
-equity
oregardless whether contract breached or tort committed
oIn order to raise an equity for breach of actual or threatened disclosure of confidential
information, the plaintiff has to show that
there is information that is confidential in nature
that it was provided in circumstances where there is an obligation of confidence
that there is actual or threatened unauthorised use of this information to the
detriment of the party who gave it
the information can be identified with a degree of specificity.
Objective test applies
Duty of
confidentiality
breach
-Duty of confidentiality can be
breached
oConsent
Someone gives consent
to give information
Express = easy
Implied = difficult
oLitigation
oPublic interest
Outweighs confidentiality
Risk must be real and risk must be of serious
harm
Preventing harm to others
W v Edgell
-Man who had killed 5 people held in secure hospital
-He wanted to be transferred to regional security unit
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