Disclosure Directive - EPLHA.04

Last updated on August 19, 2015

A ‘Disclosure Directive’ is an electronic tool that gives the patient the ability to choose who can access the patient’s personal health information in the Provincial Laboratory Information Solution (PLIS).

Some of your patients may have applied a ‘Disclosure Directive’ to restrict access to their lab information in PLIS; if so, they must give you their Disclosure Directive protective word for you to access their PLIS information. In an emergency situation, such as the patient being unconscious, you can override the Disclosure Directive and you can enter a reason to access the data without consent. All access without consent is logged and audited to ensure it is used appropriately.

The Disclosure Directive is provided under the “eHealth (Personal Health Information Access and Protection of Privacy) Act”, which provides the legislative framework for governing access and privacy to electronic health information systems.

Disclosure Directive Protective Words

When accessing a patient’s PLIS information that is protected by a Disclosure Directive you will be prompted to enter that patient’s Disclosure Directive protective word. You must not store or share the patient’s Disclosure Directive protective word.

If you are authorized to override a patient’s protective word without consent, you may do so when delay in accessing the patient’s PLIS data could result in harm to the patient. In such cases you will have to provide a reason for overriding the protective word.

An override without the patient’s consent must only be used in the following situations: 

  • The patient is unconscious or semi-conscious;
  • The patient is apparently impaired by drugs or alcohol;
  • There is a reason the patient is incapable of giving consent or is refusing to give consent.

Table of Contents for PLIS Education Material for Health Authority