Lab Results

Which labs are connected to OLIS?

Across the province, 23 labs contribute to OLIS with more than 3 billion lab results now included in the system. See which labs are participating.

How does patient consent and override work?

OLIS gives patients, or their substitute decision maker(s), the option to restrict access to their lab data in OLIS. They may restrict access at either:

  • The patient level – which restricts access to all lab test results, or
  • The test level – which restricts access to a particular test (to be specified at the time the test is conducted).

Restricting access at either of these levels means only the following are allowed to see it:

  • The health care providers who were named on the lab requisition (e.g., the ordering or copied provider),
  • The reporting lab, the lab that performed the test and the organization that placed the test request.

If a patient restricts access to his / her results in OLIS, other health care providers involved in that patient’s care will not be able to access any patient information submitted into OLIS.

When a restricted provider queries lab results for this patient, the clinical viewer will notify him / her of this.

Overriding a Consent Directive

In special cases (with the express consent from the patient or the patient’s substitute decision-maker) the patient directive restricting access to the test can be overridden by a provider from within the clinical viewer.

All consent overrides in OLIS are temporary and will last for a duration of four hours, after which, access will once again be restricted. Such an override is logged in the system, along with the identity of the overriding health care provider. OLIS logs all accesses to its data, and an audit of this information can be requested. In addition, a notification letter will be sent to the patient by the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care informing them of the override.

In cases where a health care provider obtains the express consent of the patient or the patient’s substitute decision-maker to override a directive restricting access, the ministry, as the custodian of OLIS, requires the provider to make a note in the patient’s chart and clarify for the patient that although the consent override is temporary, the information that the patient has allowed the provider to view will be saved in the system, flagged as sensitive, and may be available to other providers involved in the patient’s care.

Further, in the case that a substitute decision-maker has provided consent to override the consent directive, the ministry requires the provider to note the individual’s name and relationship to the patient in the patient’s chart. In the event the computer application / viewer service(s) does not have the functionality to support this requirement, the provider is required to record this information manually.

This information must also be available to eHealth Ontario upon request.