Now let’s be clear up front; we do not necessarily have a problem with a central number to ring to notify St Vincent’s that you will be absent from work. However St Vincent’s want to invade your privacy by asking you to reveal the nature of your illness.
You do NOT have to provide this information to St Vincent’s Health. Do not be fooled by the ‘genuine concern’ of the so-called nurse on the end of the line. You should also know that the ‘nurse’ is not employed by St Vincent’s Health and is actually employed by a contractor and is working from a call centre in Sydney.
We have now discovered that far from “always maintaining privacy and confidentiality” the kindly so-called nursing professional who offers “support” is recording information about the nature of a person’s illness when they disclose it – and is passing this information on to managers.
Our advice to members is no matter what pressure you are put under to disclose the nature of your personal illness, just stick to advising that you will be absent from work due to illness and do not give any other information to the “nursing professional” who answers the phone. They are not there to help you!
Remember you may be required to provide evidence of your illness when you return to work but you are NOT required to disclose the nature of your illness. Evidence can be a certificate from your treating health practitioner or by way of statutory declaration and neither of which require disclosure of the nature of your illness or injury. Note: you are entitled to 3 single day absences without having to provide proof of illness.
If you need medical assistance contact your regular GP, clinic or health care provider or attend the nearest accident and emergency department.
Shortly after this new notification system was put in place some members were told that they had to call Employee Connect and their supervisor/manager. St Vincent’s has advised the Union that this is not compulsory, and that you only need to ring Employee Connect, who will in turn advise your supervisor/manager.
If you have any questions or concerns call the Union on 9623 9623 or at firstname.lastname@example.org