Taking Steps to Safeguard Health Records


Abandonment of health records results in serious implications for the privacy of individuals and the security of their health information. Under Ontario’s health privacy law, pharmacy professionals, as health information custodians, have a duty to safeguard health information until such records are appropriately transferred to another legally-authorized custodian.

Pharmacy professionals must take reasonable steps to ensure personal health information in their custody or control is protected against privacy breaches.

The Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario (IPC) has developed a new fact sheet “Succession Planning to Help Prevent Abandoned Records.” This document outlines best practices to help custodians prevent abandoned records.

As well, you are encouraged to review the Record Retention, Disclosure, and Disposal guideline on the College website.

If you have any questions or concerns about abandoned records or the duties and obligations of custodians, please contact IPC at info@ipc.on.ca or 1-800-387-0073.