Guidelines for Patient Physician Electronic Communications via The Guthrie Website
We at Guthrie Health believe that new communication technologies should never replace the crucial interpersonal contacts that are the very basis of the patient-physician relationship. Rather, electronic communications should be used to enhance such contacts. With that in mind, we have developed the following guidelines to help visitors use the electronic communications available on the Guthrie website.
Definition: Patient-Physician electronic communications is defined as a computer-based communication between physicians and patients "within" an ongoing professional relationship. Guthrie Health recognizes and would like to extend access to our services to not only existing patients, but also to those persons who would like to make informed health care decisions, and possibly choose Guthrie for the first time. Therefore, Guthrie offers all website visitors a number of ways to conduct electronic transactions. These include forms and email.
Forms are web pages that have areas that allow the visitor to input information and/or fill in blanks. While forms are secure in nature, there are still some risks involved when using any type of electronic communication. Forms on www.guthrie.org are posted and stored on a secure server and accessed by authorized designated staff. All Guthrie employees and data processors, who have access to, and are associated with the processing of personal data, are obligated to respect the confidentiality of personal data as a condition of employment.
Email allows visitors to use their personal email program to send information to Guthrie. Email sent to Guthrie through this site is not fully secure, so visitors should NOT transmit medical information using the email function. GUTHRIE CANNOT GUARANTEE THE PROTECTION/INACCESSIBILITY BY OTHERS OF MEDICAL INFORMATION SENT FROM A PATIENT TO GUTHRIE VIA EMAIL.
Guthrie offers confidential toll-free telephone access (1-888-4GUTHRIE) for those who wish to request information about Guthrie services and/or to make an appointment with a Guthrie physician without using electronic communications. Telephone calls for other matters should be directed to (570) 888-6666 or (607) 937-7200 for Corning Hospital.
How We Protect Visitors:
Email is not a secure medium. Any email sent over the Internet is likely to pass through many servers before reaching its destination. During transit, these messages can be read by anyone with authorized (or unauthorized) access to those mail servers handling the mail. There are also security issues involving the collection and storage of any information captured on the website. To address this situation, Guthrie Health has established guidelines for usage of electronic communications via the Guthrie Health website, www.guthrie.org, to allow visitors to understand and evaluate these issues.
Guthrie Health will use reasonable means to protect the security and confidentiality of electronic information sent and received through www.guthrie.org. Any party may use other means to contact and communicate with Guthrie Health and its providers, such as using the toll free number (1-8884GUTHRIE.)
Providing Visitors with Anonymous Access
- Visitors can access our home page and browse our sites without disclosing their personal data.
Automatic Collection of Information
- We do not automatically log personal data nor do we link information automatically logged by other means with personal data about specific individuals.
Data Collection and Purpose Specification
- We collect personal data that visitors may volunteer while using our services.
- We do not collect information about our web visitors from other sources, such as public records or bodies, or private organizations.
- We DO NOT trade or use personal data from our website for marketing purposes unless expressed permission has been granted.
- We and third-party vendors, including Google, use first-party cookies (such as the Google Analytics cookie) to collect non-personal data which is used to inform, optimize, and serve ads based on past visits to our website.
- We may collect personal identification information from users in a variety of ways, including, but not limited to, when users register on the site, place an order and in connection with other activities, services, features or resources we make available on our site. Users may be asked for, as appropriate, name, email address, mailing address, phone number and credit card information. Users can always refuse to supply personally identification information, except that it may prevent them from engaging in certain site related activities.
- Guthrie collects and uses users personal information for the following purposes:
- To improve our Site
We continually strive to improve our website offerings based on the information and feedback we receive from you.
- To process transactions
We may use the information users provide about themselves when placing an order only to provide service to that order. We do not share this information with outside parties except to the extent necessary to provide the service.
- To send periodic emails
The email address users provide for order processing, will only be used to send them information and updates pertaining to their order. It may also be used to respond to their inquiries, and/or other requests or questions. If user decides to opt-in to our mailing list, they will receive emails that may include company news, updates, related product or service information, etc. If at any time the user would like to unsubscribe from receiving future emails, we include detailed unsubscribe instructions at the bottom of each email or user may contact us at 1-888-4GUTHRIE.
- To improve our Site
Disclosure and Visitor Choice
- Where we disclose visitors/personal data for the same purposes as those indicated in the tables above, we provide visitors with the means to opt-out of disclosure by calling this telephone number ( 1-888-4GUTHRIE )
- If we plan to disclose visitors/personal data we will contact visitors first and offer visitors the opportunity to deny permission by calling this telephone number ( 1-888-4GUTHRIE )
We collect and use information in the following way:
Our site uses web-based forms that allow customers to communicate and conduct business with us. Examples include requests for appointments, registration for classes, requests for information and services, online purchasing, and online resume submission for job postings. Data collected will vary based on the business need. Information such as email address, mailing address, account or credit card information is collected when needed to respond to a specific user inquiry, e.g., to mail requested health materials. Visitors email addresses are used to transact business when this form of communication enriches the customer experience, and only when visitors approve of such usage, such as an appointment reminder. Guthrie uses individual data collected only when it will assist in providing and improving healthcare product and service delivery. Guthrie Health is not held responsible for technical failures that occur with the user's browser, PC, Internet Service Provider, or other causes beyond our control that may render the data submitted to be lost.
We have implemented security policies, rules and technical measures to protect the personal data that we have under our control from:
- unauthorized access
- improper use or disclosure
- unauthorized modification
- unlawful destruction or accidental loss
All of our employees and data processors, who have access to, and are associated with the processing of personal data, are obligated to respect the confidentiality of our visitors' personal data.
- We ensure that visitor's personal data will not be disclosed to State institutions and authorities except if required by law or other regulation.
Links & Other Vendors
This site contains links to other sites. Guthrie Health is not responsible for the privacy practices or the content of such web sites. Visitors should read and understand the privacy statement of any web site visitor's access. Guthrie Health contracts with other vendors to provide services and information to our web site users. We may disclose information to such affiliated third parties that perform services for us in the processing of this site or servicing of visitor's transaction. These vendors are contractually obligated to keep visitors information secure and private.
Advertising and other promotional material on www.guthrie.org will be presented to viewers in a manner and context that facilitates differentiation between it and the original material created by Guthrie.
We may use third-party vendors, including Google, to show advertisements and promotions on sites across the Internet. Using these third-party vendors or sites does not imply endorsement of, or association with Guthrie Health.
Guthrie uses Secure Socket Layers (SSL) security protocol for communications between your browser and portions of the website containing personally identifiable information. Guthrie employees and data processors, who have access to, and are associated with the processing of personal data, are obligated to respect the confidentiality of our visitors' personal data as is customary in any professional healthcare environment. This web site has security measures in place to protect the loss, misuse and alteration of the information under our control. Firewalls are in place to prevent unauthorized access to our systems. Systems are monitored for suspicious activity to help prevent breaches in security. Data provided by visitors on the Guthrie website is kept on a secure server with limited access.
- Advertising and other promotional material on www.guthrie.org will be presented to viewers in a manner and context that facilitates differentiation between it and the original material created by Guthrie.
- While Guthrie makes every effort to provide up-to-date, accurate information, health care is a rapidly changing field. As change occurs in medical information, the website is periodically updated by Guthrie's medically trained staff. Guthrie attempts to follow the American Medical Association (AMA) guidelines for health information on the web. Where appropriate, information contained on this site will be supported by clear references to source data and, where possible, have specific HTML links to that data.
- Standards for responding to messages sent to www.guthrie.org are within two business days. Although Guthrie Health will endeavor to read and respond within this timeframe, due to the nature of some medical issues and operational concerns beyond our control, we cannot guarantee that any particular communication can be responded to in a particular time period. No parties shall use electronic communication for medical emergencies or for other time sensitive matters.
- If a communication is sent using www.guthrie.org and requires or invites a response from Guthrie Health, and has not received a response within a reasonable time period, it is the visitor's responsibility to follow up to determine whether the intended recipient received the communication and when the recipient will respond.
- Communications sent to www.guthrie.org are received by a non-clinical staff member. Responses are, however, composed after consultation with provider to whom the sender has requested this message to be delivered. The message may also be composed after consultation with an appropriate member of the medical or health professional staff if no specific recipient was requested or the requested provider is not available.
- Electronic communication should not be used to discuss sensitive medical information.
- Some communications portals are forms. Forms containing personally identifiable information are provided by Secure Socket Layers (SSL) security protocol. Forms are posted and stored on a secure server and accessed by authorized designated staff. All Guthrie employees and data processors, who have access to, and are associated with the processing of personal data, are obligated to respect the confidentiality of our visitors' personal data as a condition of employment.
- Other communication portals on our website are email. Email allows visitors to use their own email program to send information to us. Email messages arrive at Guthrie through website portals that are not fully secure, so email is not recommended for transmission of medical information that visitors would not want intercepted by a third party.
- We advise anyone who is not comfortable with electronic communications to please use the Guthrie Call Center toll free number -- 1-888-4GUTHRIE -- to confidentially request information about Guthrie's services and/or to make AN appointment. Phone calls for other reasons should be made to (570) 888-6666.
- Please do not direct sales solicitations to Guthrie's email address.
- Guthrie Health holds the right to terminate any electronic communication relationship with any party that repeatedly abuses this mode of communication.
Visitors may contact us about any of the guidelines and/or security issue visitors might have:
- by calling this telephone number ( 1-888-4GUTHRIE )
Updated November 2012