“If an employee refuses to tell the matter, it must not be to his or her detriment,” says Seppo Koskinen, Professor Emeritus of Labor Law at the University of Turku.
Autumn is approaching, and many summer vacations are starting to come to an end. At the same time, workplaces have to consider for the second year in a row how shifts are organized in a pandemic situation.
However, the situation is different now than a year ago, as the number of Finns who have received a coronary vaccine is growing every day. In principle, therefore, the employer could have the opportunity to consider the organization of shifts from the point of view of vaccinations as well.
But can an employer ask for information on whether an employee has received an coroner vaccine?
Not allowed, the emeritus professor of labor law interprets Seppo Koskinen From the University of Turku. This is due to the fact that coronary vaccine data became patient data, ie secret, when they were transferred to Omakanta, ie the official service that collects Finnish health data.
“When considering whether or not to receive vaccination is Health Information, the EDPS notes that patient data is information generated in the course of healthcare that is recorded in patient records. Their confidentiality and status are regulated by the Patients’ Act, ”says Koskinen.
“Coronation vaccination data is now in Own Stock. So now they are patient records. There is a separate section on them, which provides for their confidentiality and disclosure. I therefore interpret it as meaning that this changed after the information on coronary vaccinations was transferred to Omakanta. ”
Particular Article 13 of the Act deals with the confidentiality of information contained in patient records. The article is very strict and in practice prevents the employer’s right to be informed about confidential patient data.
“It is in no way regulated that if a person wants to tell about their vaccination themselves, they can do it. But if he refuses to tell, there must be no harmful consequences for the employee, ”Koskinen mentions.
The EDPS states that during an coronary pandemic, the employer may process information on the coroner vaccination taken by the employee in accordance with the necessity requirement of the Employment Data Protection Act, if the information is necessary due to, for example, employment obligations or the specific nature of work tasks. Occupational health can also provide statistical information on the vaccination coverage of workers in the workplace.
However, Koskinen interprets that the provision has precisely aligned the situation before the vaccine data were transferred to Omakanta.
What about Is it possible for an employer to organize shifts in the name of occupational safety so that, for example, vaccinees are placed in tasks that have a lot to do with others?
“According to the Patients Act, such matters should be handled through healthcare professionals. When they are confidential, the employer cannot require them to be reported, but must be a healthcare professional, ”Koskinen replies.
“It should also be remembered that if a person issues a certificate to an employer’s representative, it is the employee’s Health Information. It can only be processed by the persons to whom the processing of health data belongs, ie it only goes to the persons designated by the employer to process the health data. And they are bound by professional secrecy, ”says Koskinen.