Australian Wildlife Health Network AWHN eWHIS Surveillance Data

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Confidentiality Principles

Applying to information provided through the Australian Wildlife Health Network.

  1. These principles apply to information (other than that already clearly in the public domain) provided at AWHN teleconferences or at national teleconferences attended by them, other meetings, in correspondence, verbally, circulated to AWHN members by email or mail or available through the AWHN website including the National Wildlife Health Information System (NeWHIS).
  2. Information made available to AWHN subscribers is provided on the basis that it may assist in the control of diseases, and is intended only for that purpose.
  3. Ownership of the information for any other purpose remains with the individual or organisation reporting this information.
  4. Unless it is given to AWHN subscribers with other specific restrictions, such information may be passed on to other relevant staff within the members’ organisation or related organisations, provided
    • the source of information (i.e. AWHN teleconference, etc) is cited, and
    • recipients of the information are advised that it is confidential information that is intended for use only with respect to the control of diseases of wildlife and communicable diseases, and
    • the following disclaimer is attached to the information:
      “The following information is CONFIDENTIAL and is intended for use only with respect to the control of diseases of wildlife and communicable diseases”1.
  5. In particular, this information must not be given to the media or used in academic or other publications without the specific and written approval of the original source (owner) of this information.
  6. Information must not be used for commercial purposes.
  7. AWHN subscribers reporting information to the AWHN should exercise care in reporting information that may identify individuals or small communities, especially when there may be some stigma or other adverse consequences associated with such reports. Identifying information should only be provided when necessary to protect public health, should be provided on a “need to know” basis, and be communicated using methods with an appropriate level of security.

Endorsed by the AWHN Operations Committee (25/10/11) and Management Group (15/11/11)

1This applies especially with the detection of a notifiable or possible exotic disease.