Veterans’ Medicines Advice and Therapeutics Education Services

(Veterans’ MATES) Program

The University of South Australia is committed to ensuring personal information provided for the Veterans’ MATES program is handled in accordance with the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) (Privacy Act).

Who is collecting your personal information?

The University of South Australia (‘Us’, ‘We’, ‘Our’) collects information to help us manage and run the Veterans’ MATES program that we deliver on behalf of the Department of Veterans’ Affairs (DVA).

We collect information in two ways; via the Veterans’ MATES website and via correspondence you make with us via postal delivery or direct e-mail.

What personal information is being collected?

Your personal information that is being collected for use in the program includes:

  • Your responses to the survey forms that you complete which have been provided as part of the Veterans’ MATES program. These surveys include bar code identification but no other personal identifying data;
  • Your subscription to Veterans’ MATES materials by e-mail or short messaging service (SMS);
  • Inquiries and general correspondence from members of the public to us; and
  • Requests for information.

The program tracks access of the Veterans’ MATES website. No attempt is made to identify users or their browsing activities, and no personal information is collected from browsing activities in the website. Types of information we record includes the user’s server address (i.e. the address of the computer from which the website was accessed), the user’s top level domain name (e.g. .com, .gov, .au, etc.), the date and time of the visit to the site, the pages accessed and documents downloaded.

Why is your personal information being collected?

Your personal information is being collected to enable us to develop and deliver you with personalised, effective health and wellbeing information, resources, advice and support that is tailored to your personal specific health care needs and circumstances and aims to:

  • improve your use of medicines (reducing the use of unnecessary medicines; increasing the use of under-utilised medicines, reducing adverse medicine events) and
  • improve your use of related health services.

All information we collect is used exclusively to perform the functions and activities required to deliver Veterans’ MATES.

Responses to the survey are used to improve our service to you, to gain greater insight into the factors affecting the health care of the veteran community and to understand how different aspects of the program can be modified to improve the service. Survey responses provide valuable information to guide us in future work in this area.

Your answers will not be given to any third party including your doctor, pharmacist or to DVA.

If you subscribe to Veterans’ MATES materials by e-mail or short messaging service (SMS), your email address and any other personal information that you might provide will be maintained on our mailing list. The mailing list will only be used for the purpose for which you have provided it and will not be added to another mailing list without your prior consent. We will not use your email address for any other purpose and will not disclose it without your consent.

Who will we disclose your personal information to?

Handling of personal material is guided by the Veterans’ MATES Security Framework and Standard Operating Procedures. The Security Framework has been developed specifically for the Veterans' MATES program, is approved by DVA, and consistent with all security standards for the storage and handling of government information and the Privacy Principles.

All information related to your health and your relationship with DVA is considered sensitive. Sensitive material will be handled within the Quality Use of Medicines and Pharmacy Research Centre, University of South Australia, under a set of Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) developed specifically for the Veterans' MATES program and in line with DVA requirements and guidelines.

We will disclose your personal information to the Fujifilm, who is our contracted supplier to format, print and mail the educational materials to you and your GP. We will only disclose information required for those activities, which include contact information (name and address) and information contained in the patient feedback sent to your GP. Fujifilm is subject to the same security requirements set in the Veterans’ MATES Security Framework.

How will we manage your personal information?

Your personal information is stored securely in a purpose built environment (within Australia) with restricted access to the information to the people who require access to perform their duties. Data are stored on a central, dedicated server in a secure setting as required in the Attorney General's Protective Security Policy Framework. In addition, the information is physically located within a protected environment, which is secured by alarms and swipe card access.

What will happen if we don’t collect your personal information?

By providing your personal information to us by answering survey forms, you consent to us collecting and handling your personal information in accordance with this privacy collection notice. Participation is voluntary, and you are free to withdraw at any time. If you do not consent, this will not affect your treatment or relationship with DVA in any way.

If you don’t provide your personal information in this way:

  • your information will not be aggregated into the medicines-based data that is used to inform our health policies, practices and research about medicine prescribing and use in the Australian veteran population.

Our privacy policy

Please refer to the full version of the Veterans’ MATES Privacy Policy at for more information about how we manage personal information.