Telus Health Babylon app under investigation

The Babylon Telus Health app, which was designed to give Albertans an alternative way to seek medical advice, is under investigation by Alberta’s information privacy commissioner.

Telus announced on March 19 that it had partnered with the Alberta government to deliver physician services via smartphones.

READ MORE: Albertans can now meet with Alberta-licensed physicians through their smartphone

According to a news release from the privacy commissioner, the investigation was opened due to separate assessments that a Calgary physician and Babylon Health Canada Ltd. had submitted on the app.

“No one is required to use Babylon by Telus Health. I encourage physicians or patients with concerns about this app to remain opted out of using it while my office reviews the app’s compliance with Alberta’s privacy laws,” said privacy commissioner Jill Clayton.

Battle River Medical Clinic in Ponoka is reminding residents that physicians at the facility are offering telephone appointments every day of the week, and advises it will be launching video-conferencing appointments soon.

“We want to reiterate that Ponoka’s physicians are here for our patients,” said the clinic’s Dr. Gregory Sawisky.

“Patients are often able to get a phone call back from their doctor the same day. If their doctor is unavailable, the daily access clinic doctor can call them back.”

Sawisky says Babylon’s physicians do not have access to your health records, your medical history, or your medication, and sometimes, don’t even reside in Alberta.

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