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Our Policies

This policy is effective as of March 2022



The provision of quality health care requires a doctor-patient relationship of trust and confidentiality. Consistent with our commitment to quality care this practice has developed a policy to protect patient privacy in compliance with privacy legislation.


  • That we need your consent to collect information about you
  • Why we need to collect information
  • How your information will be used by us and to whom we may need to disclose it
  • That you may request access to the information we hold about you (there will be a fee suggested by the AMA for this service)
  • That you may discuss any concerns you have about how we handle your information

Your medical record is a confidential document. It is the policy of this practice to maintain security of personal health information at all times and to ensure that this information is only available to authorised members of staff.

Further information on our policy is available at reception. Or click here to read our policy.

To find out more about accessing your medical records & your rights click here or call 1300 582 113.

Click here to read our Website Usage Privacy Policy


Telephone calls and emails to your GP

Urgent telephone calls to your doctor will be endeavoured to be dealt with immediately, ideally by your doctor if they are not in a consultation, or answered by a practice nurse. If your call concerns non-urgent matters, the doctor will be asked to return your call as soon as is convenient, but in that same day.

Replies to emails will be returned within 24 hours. Please be aware there are risks associated with some electronic communications- privacy and confidentiality may be compromised. Do not use email to contact the practice in an emergency.



It is a policy of this clinic that all patients must make an appointment for their test results. This can be face to face or by a telephone consult.


Reminder and Recall system

Emerald Medical Centre uses its IT system to input & generate confidential reminders for important health requirements, eg to notify you when some routine tests or vaccinations are due (e.g. pap smears, 75+ and 45-49 year old health assessments). We can either do this via a text, if you have a registered mobile phone, or by posted letter.

These systems are not infallible, but we are constantly trying to improve. If you would like a reminder for a routine test/examination or you would prefer not to be on a recall system, please let the receptionists know.

Equally, if you would prefer to opt out of receiving these reminders please talk to your GP, nurse or the practice administration team.


Referrals & Repeat Prescriptions

In the interest of patient safety, all referrals, and repeat scripts require a consultation.


Drugs of Dependence Policy

Opioid painkillers (e.g. morphine, oxycontin, pethidine, fentanyl etc), benzodiazepines (valium/diazepam, xanax/alprazolam) or amphetamines will not be provided for non-cancer patients on a first consultation by any GP at Emerald Medical Centre. Methadone is not provided at this medical centre either.

At Emerald Medical Centre we are sensitive to the fact that there is a high prevalence of drug-seeking behaviour for opioids, and there is a high risk these drugs may be sought and diverted for misuse or trafficking.

In order to assist patients to continue to be provided with these medications over an extended time we insist that patients respect our policy that:

  • Any new doctor takes all necessary steps to satisfy themselves that the medication is appropriate to their care. This may involve:
    •  A thorough consultation to consider the history of diagnosis, consider previous treatments and their effectiveness, examine for signs of disease or evidence of harmful misuse of substances and then generate a pain management plan with the patient considering the range of conservative and medical options (which may or may not include these medications).
    • A urine drug screen to check for harmful use of substance of dependence.
    • The GP is given time to seek evidence from previous healthcare providers of the patient’s medical history and medications.
    • Seeking information from the Prescription Shopping Information Service (PSIS) operated by the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS).
    • The GP applying for a permit of approval from the Department of Health & Human Services Drugs & Poisons Department to continue to prescribe these medications on an ongoing basis (this is a legal requirement as per Drugs, Poisons and Controlled Substances Regulations 2017.
    • Generating a contract between the GP and patient to comprehensibly document the agreed duties of the doctor and patient in providing these prescriptions
  • The patient only seeks the prescriptions from Emerald Medical Centre.
  • The patient only consults their regular GP for these prescriptions. Minimum quantities will be provided by a substitute GP in Emerald Medical Centre.
  • The patient will not be provided with prescriptions any earlier than the time that the most recent prescription was due to expire.
  • Lost or stolen prescriptions will not be replaced until that prescription was due to expire. In absolutely exceptional circumstances will replacements be considered.
  • Any coercion to prescribe or aggression towards staff will not be tolerated.
  • The GP reserves the right to refuse drugs of dependence for any reason.

This policy is adapted from RACGP practice policy ‘Prescribing drugs of dependence in general practice’.


Home Visits

We provide home visits to our regular patients of EMC within our local area and only at the doctor’s discretion. No Bulk Billing is available for home visits.



Feedback is an essential component of our quality improvement activities. The clinic is committed to encouraging quality improvements, and identifying opportunities to make changes that will improve the clinical care of patients, and activities to promote health in the overall practice population.  We welcome your suggestions on the practice and how it could be improved. Suggestions are completely confidential and help us to improve our services.  If you are unhappy with any aspect of the care you receive, we are keen to know about it.  Please feel free to talk to your doctor or a receptionist about any concerns.  We believe that problems are best dealt with, within the practice. We want to know if you are concerned about any aspect of our service.  If you remain dissatisfied you may contact

The Health Complaints Commissioner

Level 26/570 Bourke Street Melbourne 3000

Phone: 1300 582 113

Website:  www.hcc.vic.gov.au