Privacy Training for Medical Receptionists in NZ

Your Medical Receptionists are your 
key frontline personnel. Ongoing and regular discussions around patient privacy, as well as reception privacy with your receptionists, will enhance their ability to minimise potential breaches and speculation.

Imagine you are the patient for a minute, think about your reception area and what the patient experience might be.

  • Can other people hear you giving your personal details?
  • Is there an opportunity to discuss your concerns more privately?
  • Is there a process to ensure privacy for hearing and visually impaired patients?
  • How are identifiable documents (lab tests results, requests for information, prescriptions, transfer requests, enrolment forms etc), managed at the front desk?
  • Are phone conversations discreet and how are patient details kept private?

Regular Privacy training is an audit requirement for practices who are Cornerstone (GP Practices) and ACC (Urgent Care) Accredited. 

How often do you need to complete training?
Cornerstone within 5 years and ACC (Urgent Care) – 1-2 years

Training Available

Online Privacy Training

> Online e-learning is available for everyone

> No fees or costs to patient/practice

> Training modules relate to the health environment

> Employees can complete anytime from anywhere

> Training times will vary depending on the module (30min- 4hours)

Printable Certificates available on completion of module

Onsite Privacy Training

> The HDC (Health & Disability Commissioner) facilitates training for groups

> Contact the HDC to arrange an advocate to organise onsite training

> Discuss any specific privacy training with the advocate

> Ideal for group discussions and sharing experiences

> This service is free; however, you may want to present a small thank you gift


On a Personal Note

I have organised and undergone both the online privacy as well as onsite privacy training. Both have their merits. Ultimately, the goal is to ensure that your team gets regular and ongoing training. Reception meetings/huddles are opportunities to further educate and train teams on privacy. ALL staff need to be vigilant when dealing with patient privacy.

Feedback from my team on the online privacy training was positive and rewarding. The content was relevant and relatable to their daily work.

Onsite training was more personable and being able to speak one/one with an advocate and discuss challenges in the work environment was valuable. There was also the opportunity to discuss privacy within the group and draw on experiences.

             IF IN DOUBT DON’T GIVE OUT!!

MedTech Settings for Receptionist– (Administrator access)

Privacy restrictions apply to ALL staff members set up in a PMS.

Medtech suggests the following set up for the Receptionist role.

  • Select Setup/Staff/Members. The Staff window will be displayed
  • Select Staff –/New, CTRL+N or click the Add a new staff member icon. The New Staff window will be displayed, defaulting to the Staff Details tab
  • Complete the following fields in the Staff Details tab (other fields can be completed if necessary); Code (e.g. staff initials) and Internal Name
  • Select the Access tab. If the new staff member is to use a password when they log in, enter this password into the Login Password field (I recommend not giving full access, restricted to only what is needed e.g. do not give access to being able to ‘delete’ any invoices).
  • Select the level of security the staff member is to have from the Access Rights tick boxes e.g. Front Desk, Accounts, and Modify Invoices
  •  If any windows are to be displayed automatically when the staff member logs on, select the tick box next to the window that is to be opened
  •  Select the Remember Screen Positions tick box
  •  Click OK

Please note that the new staff member’s toolbar will also need to be configured. Your new employee checklist should include the relevant setup access for their role and security levels.

Privacy screens are available for monitors, these can easily be fitted to increase your workstation privacy for more information contact the Sales Team at 

I will soon be sharing more articles around Privacy. Any questions or want to have a chat with me, click here

Debbie Cripps

Norman Johnston
"The most powerful motivating factor for employees is seeing tangible progress whilst performing meaningful work. Effective information Technology achieves this objective."

Norman Johnston
Think I.T. Team


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