Healthcare Identifiers Service
You can view your IHI history online through Medicare Online
If you are enrolled in Medicare, or hold a Department of Veterans' Affairs treatment card, you have been allocated a unique Individual Healthcare Identifier (IHI).
Your healthcare identifier can be used by healthcare providers to improve the security and management of your personal health information. Under law, the Department of Human Services can give your IHI to your healthcare provider (such as your doctor) without your consent. However, the healthcare identifiers legislation and existing privacy laws govern how these identifiers are used.
Healthcare identifiers do not replace Medicare or Department of Veterans' Affairs numbers and do not affect the way medical benefits are claimed.
A healthcare identifier is not a health record. The information held by the HI Service is limited to demographic information (such as your name, date of birth and sex) which is needed to uniquely identify you and your healthcare providers.
Each time your healthcare identifier is searched for and retrieved in the system, the details of who requested your identifier is recorded. If you are registered for our Medicare Online, you can view your IHI history online.
You need to know
Types of Healthcare Identifiers
As part of the service, every Australian resident has been allocated a unique 16 digit Individual Healthcare Identifier (IHI).
Benefits of the Healthcare Identifiers Service
The HI Service will give individuals and healthcare providers confidence that the right health information is associated with the right individual at the point of care.
Authorised healthcare providers or authorised employees of a healthcare organisation can access the HI Service to get the IHI of a patient being treated.
The system design does not allow for ‘browsing’ of records. A request by an authorised healthcare provider for a patient’s identifier will only reveal an IHI when there is an exact match with the patient information provided by the healthcare provider. Each time your healthcare identifier is accessed, the details of who requested your identifier is recorded and is included in your IHI history.
Penalties for the intentional misuse of healthcare identifiers, such as an inappropriate disclosure of information by DHS, or users of the service are set out in legislation and current privacy laws apply.
Allocation of HI numbers
If you are enrolled in Medicare, or hold a Department of Veterans' Affairs treatment card, you will have been allocated a unique Individual Healthcare Identifier.
Viewing your IHI information
Individuals and their authorised representatives can access the information held by DHS as part of the HI Service.
You can view your IHI history online by registering for our Medicare Online. If you have already registered for Online Services, simply logon to look up your IHI history.
Requesting a pseudonym IHI
If you need to hide your identity, you can request a pseudonym IHI.