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UW Medicine is pleased to offer you information via a web-based version of our computer systems called UW Medicine eCare. We think it is important for you to know how we handle information we communicate via the Internet. This Terms & Conditions statement outlines UW Medicine practices and our sensitivity to your right to privacy. UW Medicine reserves the right to revoke access at any time, for any reason.

Response to Electronic Communication - UW Medicine will make its best effort to provide a timely response to electronic inquiries (emails and other electronic communication). In some cases, the clinic staff who needs to respond to an electronic inquiry or other communication may not be immediately available; you should allow at least two (2) business days for a response. Accordingly, emergency situations requiring immediate attention should not be submitted electronically. UW Medicine is only able to respond to electronic communications based on the information sent by you, the patient. If there is insufficient information provided, UW Medicine will be unable to provide accurate and reliable services.

Website Links - UW Medicine eCare may offer links to related medical websites not managed by UW Medicine. These website link(s) are for your informational purposes only. UW Medicine does not endorse and have not verified the accuracy of the information in/on these websites, and you should not rely on any of the information found on the websites for purposes of treatment or diagnosis.

E-mail Privacy - As a user of UW Medicine eCare you should be aware that you will be notified via e-mail when there is new medical information to be viewed on UW Medicine eCare. This means that any person with access to your e-mail will be able to see this notification. This could include your family members, employer or anyone else who can access your e-mail account. Although no private medical information will be sent, the notification that new medical information is available by accessing UW Medicine eCare may be information that you would not want others to know. Thus, you should take this into account when providing an e-mail address or using UW Medicine eCare. If you send us an e-mail communication, it may be shared with the UW Medicine staff who assist the provider in providing your medical care. Your confidential medical information on UW Medicine eCare will be accessible only to appropriate UW Medicine Staff.

Appropriate Use of eCare - eCare is designed to be used for brief and simple medical questions and communication; it is not intended for management of complex, multi-symptom medical concerns; eCare is not a substitute for medical care or office visits.

Termination of eCare messaging access may be IMMEDIATE (without notice) in the following situations:

  • Messages containing content that threaten violence, aggressive actions, or consists of non-consensual and overtly sexual communications to staff, visitors, or other patients;
  • Threats that would cause a reasonable person to fear bodily harm or threaten dangerous or reckless behavior that may jeopardize the safe operation of the clinic and/or the medical center;
  • Communications about Illegal activities;

Other reasons for termination of eCare messaging access include, but are not limited to:

  • Patient's intentional misrepresentation of true identity;
  • Verbal abuse, harassment, or sexual advances directed at staff, visitors, or other patients, but which does not rise to the level described above;
  • Persistent use of eCare to express dissatisfaction with care to the extent that it jeopardizes the therapeutic nature of the provider-patient relationship after the patient has been directed to patient relations staff for assistance;

eCare should not be used for:

  • eCare messaging should not be used to send inappropriate or offensive photographs, including photographs of genitals or other private body parts. All photographs become a part of the patient record;
  • Family members should not use their personal eCare accounts to communicate information about another family member as the eCare message will become a permanent part of the author's medical record;

Security and Confidentiality - UW Medicine affords the same degree of confidentiality to medical information stored on UW Medicine eCare as is given to medical information stored by UW Medicine in any other medium. UW Medicine is committed to protecting the confidentiality of your medical information. We limit UW Medicine employee access and ability to enter or view information based upon their role in your care. Firewalls, passwords, encryption, and audit trails are further used to safeguard your information. UW Medicine shall identify the records released and note the time and date of access each time you access UW Medicine eCare. UW Medicine has taken steps to make all information received from our online visitors as secure as possible against unauthorized access and use.

For other than general information viewing, UW Medicine eCare must be accessed with a Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) compatible browser or terminal. Our SSL web server uses authentication and offers a high level of encryption technology.

You can tell when your connection is encrypted by looking at the location (URL) field. If the URL begins with https:// (instead of http://), the connection is encrypted. This means your data cannot be read or deciphered by unauthorized individuals. You can tell whether you are truly connected to UW Medicine by viewing the digital certificate. This certificate verifies the connection between the UW Medicine server's public key and the server's identification.

Usernames and passwords provide two layers of authentication and your credentials are stored in an encrypted database that is isolated from the internet. As a UW Medicine eCare user, your role in maintaining the security of your medical information is to change your password on a regular basis and keep your login ID and password confidential.

If you as a patient find a third-party application that you would like to use to access and import your health information, UW Medicine provides the ability for you to use this application. To do this, you must establish a UW Medicine eCare account since the security - username and password - you set for this will be your authorization for any third-party application to access and import your health information. UW Medicine reserves the right to disable any third-party application if needed.