07 July 2023
Bridget Morison [FYI request #23125 email]
Kia ora Bridget Your Official Information Act request, reference: GOV-025682
Thank you for your request of 14 June 2023, asking for the following information under the Official
Information Act 1982 (the Act):
In relation to sensitive claimants particularly, please provide any policy documents or comments on
1) There are commercial online information/document management portals available to providers
and similar systems in place with ACC supplier groups which are being used to both hold and submit
claimant reports. There's the potential these digital documents are accessible to others without
claimants knowledge or consent.
a) Aside from reliance upon providers to comply with the Privacy Act, what level of
oversight and responsibility is in place, by ACC, to ensure claimants are kept safe and retain
control over the access and use/disclosure of their personal health information?
2) When a claimant makes a professional complaint against a provider they’re exercising
responsibility and their right to complain about unethical professional behaviour. Their actions can
help prevent harm to subsequent clients of the provider and improve the quality of ACC funded
services. The complainant however runs the unfortunate risk of being misrepresented as
problematic. What efforts are made by ACC to ensure these claimants are supported and are not
being further marginalised by the use of information or messaging systems which can be used to
dissuade providers from providing treatment services to them.
You ask ACC to provide an explanation or justification
Under the Act a distinction exists between a request for information already known and held by an agency
(official information), versus a request for an agency to form an opinion or provide an explanation, and thus
create new information to answer (not official information). Your requests for ACC to provide a comment
on a statement, or a hypothetical situation are therefore not considered to be requesting official
information under the Act. Accordingly, we are refusing to respond to these requests. Information about access to sensitive claims files is publicly available
We have published previous OIA responses on this topic, here:
Our website also contains information about how we protect sensitive claim clients: www.acc.co.nz/im-
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If you have any questions about this response, please get in touch
You can email me at [email address].
If you are not happy with this response, you can also
contact the Ombudsman via [email address] o
r by phoning 0800 802 602. Information
about how to make a complaint is available at www.ombudsman.parliament.nz.
Sara Freitag Acting Manager Official Information Act Services
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