Loyola University Health System (LUHS) is committed to excellence in patient care and the education of health professionals. We believe that thoughtful stewardship, learning and constant reflection on experience improve all we do as we strive to provide the highest quality healthcare. That quality of care is extended to our web sites and the contents provided therein.

LUHS is very interested in the privacy and safety of our patients and visitors to our web sites. This privacy policy is designed to assist you in understanding how we collect, use and safeguard personal information which you may provide to us and to assist you in making informed decisions when using our sites. This statement will be continuously assessed against new technologies, business practices and our patients' and visitors' needs.

This privacy policy does not apply to the Loyola University Medical Education Network website (LUMEN). When visiting LUMEN at www.lumen.luc.edu/lumen, please review the posted policies as to the use of that site.

We will post general notices of changes to this policy, but individual notice of changes to web site visitors will not be provided. Please check back periodically and review this privacy policy to ensure that you still agree with its terms. You will be bound by any subsequent changes in the privacy policy, even if you do not become aware of such changes.

  1. What You Should Know About Information We Send to You

    Please remember that information provided by LUHS, in the absence of a visit with a health-care professional, must be considered as an educational service only. The information sent through e-mail should not be relied upon as a medical consultation. Information we send you by e-mail is not designed to replace your physician's independent judgment about the appropriateness or risks of a procedure for a given patient. We will do our best to provide you with information that will help you make your own health-care decisions.

  2. How We May Use Personal Information You Choose to Provide Us

    LUHS does not obtain personal information about you when you visit our site, unless you provide us that information voluntarily. Our web sites contain forms through which users may request information or supply feedback to us. In some cases, personal information may be required so that we can supply the requested information to you. Please note that our forms are NOT encrypted unless otherwise noted. Therefore, people who are actively attempting to intercept web transmissions may be able to read information you send to us. However, we have installed a number of security measures to protect the confidentiality of your personal information. We have a firewall to prevent unauthorized access to our systems. Once the information is sent to our sites, it is kept on a separate database not available to users on the Internet and protected to the fullest extent reasonably possible.

    We will not provide, sell or distribute any personal information received from visitors on web forms or e-mail to any outside organization. We may use your personal information, with the assistance of third parties, to track the effectiveness of our web site efforts and to generate health-care related materials. Additionally, we may disclose information when legally compelled to do so.

  3. Why We Track Where You Go on Our Web Sites

    In order to understand how our web site is being used, we do typical web traffic analyses through which we track which pages are visited and in what order, where users come from and how long users spend on our sites. We never associate such information with the specific identities of users or other personally identifiable information.

    This information is used in the aggregate to help us improve our sites and make it more useful to you. We do disclose such aggregate information that does not identify individuals to partners, advertisers and other third parties.

  4. What Are Cookies and How Do We Use Information Collected from Them?

    LUHS' web sites utilize a standard technology called "cookies" and web server logs to collect information about how our web sites are used. A "cookie" is a small line of text that is stored with your web browser when you visit a cookie-enabled web site. The text may contain an identification code or user preferences. Your browser has options that allow you to control whether the browser accepts cookies, rejects cookies or notifies you each time a cookie is sent to you.

    Cookies help us collect important business and technical statistics. The information in the cookies lets us trace the paths followed by visitors to our web sites as they move from one page to another. Web server logs allow us to count how many people visit our web sites and evaluate our web site visitor capacity. We do not use these technologies to capture your individual e-mail address or any personally identifying information about you.

  5. The Use and Security of E-mail

    The comments form, which is submitted to the Director of Interactive Marketing Division, is intended for comments relating to the LUHS web sites and their design and functionality. The information submitted is reviewed by the webmaster and by the LUHS web site steering committee. The comments are used to determine areas of the LUHS web sites that need improvement or correction, or to determine new content that should be added. When submitting an e-mail comment to the webmaster, users are asked to provide their name, e-mail address and organization/institution. This information is voluntary and is not required to submit a comment.

    If you ask us a question or would like a response to a comment, the inclusion of an accurate, viable e-mail address is necessary in order for us to respond. On some forms, where you may be asked to provide your e-mail address, we may tell you that we will add your name to a health information and distribution list unless you ask us not to do so. These forms will contain an opt-out check box. We will occasionally send health information or other notices regarding important changes to our web sites and new services which we think valuable to those people who do not opt-out. In addition to or in place of checking the opt-out check box, you may contact the LUHS webmaster at luhsweb@lumc.edu and indicate your desire not to receive any health information or other unsolicited e-mails from LUHS.

    Please be aware that normal e-mail is not encrypted. Active snoopers may be able to read e-mail that we send you or that you send us. If you ask us a question and supply your e-mail address, you are authorizing us to respond to you with an unencrypted e-mail message that may contain private information about you or your question. While we are responsible for the privacy of messages that we store on the network, we cannot be responsible for the privacy of those messages once we have transmitted them to you or to your e-mail provider.

  6. Children's Privacy

  7. Naturally, the safety of children is very important to us. While some sections of the LUHS web site are designed for use by children under the age of 13, LUHS does not request, seek or intentionally collect personal information from children under the age of 13. Should a child under the age of 13 wish to submit a comment or send an e-mail to LUHS without expectation of a response, that child should not fill in any information on the comment form except the comment box. Children under the age of 13 who submit such e-mails or comments should not include their e-mail address, name or other personal information. In the event that LUHS has actual knowledge that it has received an e-mail from a child under the age of 13 that contains personal information provided solely so that LUHS may respond to the e-mail, such information will be discarded 60 days after it is received. In accordance with the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act, LUHS will make reasonable efforts to obtain parental consent via an original e-mail submission in advance of any child under the age of 13 submitting a comment that includes personal information before it will be stored for more than 60 days.

    No personal information is collected from the children's area of the LUHS web site (Ronald McDonald Children's Hospital of Loyola University Medical Center, rmch.lumc.edu).  Should, however, a child under the age of 13 contact LUHS via the webmaster, and LUHS is able to determine that the sender is under the age of 13, LUHS will not disclose any of that child's information to a third party.

    Parents can review within 60 days any identifiable personal information sent by their child to LUHS, ask to have it deleted, or refuse to allow any further collection or use of the child's information by sending an e-mail requesting same to the LUHS webmaster at luhsweb@lumc.edu.

  8. Links to Other Web Sites

    In order to provide visitors with greater value, LUHS may provide links to various third-party web sites. We are not responsible for the practices employed by web sites linked to or from our web sites nor the information or content contained therein.

    Please remember that when you use a link to go from LUHS' web sites to another web site, our privacy policy is no longer in effect. Your browsing and interaction on any other web site, including web sites that have a link on our web site, is subject to that web site's own rules and policies. Please read over those rules and policies before proceeding. These destination links are provided only for your convenience, and as such, you access them at your own risk.

  9. Employee Access, Training and Expectations

  10. All LUHS employees involved in web development or who otherwise access the data collected on the web sites have been fully educated about the LUHS privacy policy, terms and conditions of use and disclaimer. In general, our business practices limit employee access to confidential information, and limit the use and disclosure of such information to authorized persons, processes and transactions. All said employees must abide by our privacy policy, and those who violate said policies are subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination.

  11. Threaded Discussions/Web Board
  12. LUHS provides specified users with the opportunity to utilize threaded of discussion boards, also known as Web Board. Please remember that information that you voluntarily disclose in these areas becomes public information that can be collected and used by others. If you post personal information on the Web Board that is accessible to the public, you may receive unsolicited messages from other parties in return. As such, you should exercise caution when deciding to disclose your personal information on the Web Board. For further terms and conditions regarding the use of the LUHS threaded discussion boards, please see the Threaded Discussion Guidelines.