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WorkSafeNB improves privacy protection

November 2, 2015

SAINT JOHN ‒ WorkSafeNB announced today several new measures to further protect privacy of New Brunswick’s injured workers.

“At WorkSafeNB, privacy and confidentiality of information has always been a fundamental principle,” said Gerard Adams, WorkSafeNB president and CEO. “Our employees strive every day to ensure personal information is protected and given, with proper consent, only to those who are entitled. These new safeguards will help us ensure that protection.”

The move comes after breaches were identified by the Office of the Access to Information and Privacy Commissioner.

WorkSafeNB has sent notifications to all persons affected by the breaches.

As a Crown corporation and custodian of health-care information under the Personal Health Information Privacy and Access Act, WorkSafeNB shares information only in accordance with New Brunswick legislative requirements.

“We appreciate the opportunity to work with the Commissioner’s office,” said Adams. “We're always seeking ways to improve our processes to ensure the best outcomes possible for injured workers and employers.”

WorkSafeNB’s new privacy safeguards include:

  • The appointment of a privacy officer.
  • An updated privacy policy approved by WorkSafeNB’s board of directors.
  • A review of policies and directives for privacy compliance.
  • Creation of a committee, including legal and operational staff members, to monitor and address privacy issues.
  • Quarterly reporting of privacy issues to the executive management team.
  • Improved privacy awareness training to all staff (includes ongoing privacy training for all staff and privacy awareness orientation for every new staff member).
  • Creation of a mechanism for staff to report concerns.
  • Redrafting of the consent agreement on WorkSafeNB’s Form 67 ‒ Report of Accident or Occupational Disease and addition of a note on Form 67 and WorkSafeNB’s online privacy policy to advise workers that it shares limited personal information for the purpose of conducting surveys to evaluate and improve our health-care programming.
  • Addition of a plain language guide for injured workers and employers regarding privacy on WorkSafeNB’s website.
  • A link from WorkSafeNB’s privacy policy to the plain language guide.

All measures have been implemented, except one ‒ changes to Form 67, which WorkSafeNB is currently redrafting.

WorkSafeNB respects and complies with the Right to Information and Protection of Privacy Act and Personal Health Information Privacy and Access Act. In addition, all WorkSafeNB employees adhere to a code of ethics and pledge of confidentiality.

WorkSafeNB’s vision is healthy and safe workplaces in New Brunswick. In addition to awareness, educational and compliance activities to prevent workplace injuries and illness, it also offers comprehensive rehabilitation services and compensation benefits.

WorkSafeNB operates under New Brunswick’s Occupational Health and Safety Act, the Workers' Compensation Act, the Workplace Health, Safety and Compensation Commission and Workers’ Compensation Appeals Tribunal Act  and the Firefighters’ Compensation Act.

            

 

 

 

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