Important information for Garrawarra residents and families

You may be aware of media reports in August 2018, regarding patient documents that were stolen from a decommissioned building at the Garrawarra Centre. The documents, which date back prior to 2002, were handed to radio station Triple J, which is owned by the Australian Broadcasting Commission (ABC).  The documents were returned from the ABC to the Garrawarra Centre, South Eastern Sydney Local Health District, in August 2018.

Over a two year period, from 2000, residents, equipment and files were moved into new buildings at Garrawarra Centre.  Some disused equipment was stored in a building before it was locked, boarded up and fenced. Finance documents relating to capital works and a number of patient documents were also stored in the building. 

In September 2018, all decommissioned buildings at Garrawarra Centre were thoroughly inspected to ensure no documents remain within the buildings.  These decommissioned buildings are secured by a perimeter fence and appropriate signage.

South Eastern Sydney Local Health District wishes to express its sincere apologies to residents and families for any distress this event may have caused.  The Local Health District wishes to reassure residents and families that the stolen patient documents have been returned, scanned and are held securely in a digital format at the Garrawarra Centre.  

The matter was reported to the NSW Ministry of Health and the Office of the NSW Privacy Commissioner.  The NSW Minister for Health directed the NSW Ministry of Health to conduct an audit of archived medical records across the State.  South Eastern Sydney Local Health District has reviewed its records management practices and will report the findings to the NSW Privacy Commissioner and NSW Ombudsman’s Office. 

If you have concerns or require further information please contact the Garrawarra Centre on (02) 8545 4700 between 8am and 4pm (Monday to Friday) and ask to speak to Ms Jan Heiler, Acting Nurse-Facility Manager