Home » Who We Are » Privacy of Personal Information
NSBSP on Twitter NSBSP on Facebook

Privacy of Personal Information

Frequently Asked Questions

The Nova Scotia Breast Screening Program (NSBSP) is committed to protecting the privacy of personal information contained in the NSBSP Screening and Diagnostic Databases. Management and protection of personal information in these databases is under the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (the FOIPOP Act) and other related laws.

1. Why does the NSBSP collect health information?

The NSBSP is a provincial program of the Nova Scotia Department of Health and Wellness and has a role in helping health care professionals provide the best service and care possible. We are authorized by law to collect health information from hospitals, health care professionals and, directly from patients. We use this information to measure and improve the health of Nova Scotians by setting standards of care, providing education, supporting research, and producing reports that identify important trends in health and health care.

2. What information is in the NSBSP Databases?

The NSBSP collects data necessary for ensuring clients are properly followed and do not get 'lost in the shuffle'. Some of these data elements include basic demographics (name, age, date of birth), relevant history (number of pregnancies, family history of breast cancer, menopausal status) and information from current procedures (date of exam, clinical findings, radiologist report).

3. How does the NSBSP protect my health information?

The NSBSP has a privacy policy that describes the steps that must be taken to keep your information safe. These include staff orientation to principles of privacy and confidentiality; restricted access to the servers/computers where the database is located; and additional security measures for all electronic files, including user names and passwords, firewall and antivirus software.

4. How does the NSBSP use my health information?

The NSBSP use the information to evaluate care provided patients, to plan education programs for health professional, in statistical reports, and approved research projects. If personal health information is used for research purposes, the research request must receive approval from a recognized Research Ethics Board and a Data Access Committee. Individuals will never be identified in any published reports. The NSBSP also has Data Management Principles designed to protect all the information in the Databases.

5. Can I get access to my personal health information?

The NSBSP has a policy and procedures in place for managing requests. You will need to complete and sign a written request using the "Personal Information Request Form". If you have a question about the health information collected by the NSBSP, please contact the NSBSP Privacy Officer at 902-473-3960 or by e- mail at theresa.foley@cdha.nshealth.ca. Your right to access your health information applies only to your own information. It does not extend to your family members. You must give your written permission in order for a family member to see your health information.

6. Can I request that my personal information not be collected/be removed from the NSBSP Databases?

It is very important to the work of the NSBSP that health information about its patients is as complete as possible. There may be alternatives to removing all of your health information. Please contact the NSBSP Privacy Officer at 902- 473-3960 or e-mail theresa.foley@cdha.nshealth.ca to discuss your questions.

7. How do I request a change of information?

To request a change to your personal health information you must submit a request to the Privacy Officer, or designate, of the NSBSP. The Privacy Officer, or designate, will assist you in the application process.