Information exchange

Last update: 19 September 2022
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    Prescribed bodies

    Children and young people are safer when agencies work collaboratively and share information to provide consistent care and assess risk.

    Chapter 16A of the Children and Young Persons (Care and Protection) Act 1998 enables certain information exchange between agencies that are ‘prescribed bodies.’ Specialised substitute residential care providers are ‘prescribed bodies’.

    Other prescribed bodies, set out in Schedule 5 to the Children and Young Persons (Care and Protection) Regulation 2022  include:

    • NSW government agencies
    • schools
    • public health agencies and private hospitals
    • children’s services (such as preschools)
    • police
    • Commonwealth bodies such as
      • National Disability Insurance Agency
      • National Disability Insurance Scheme Quality and Safeguards Commission.

    What information can be exchanged?

    This legislation allows providers to exchange information relating to the safety, welfare or wellbeing of a child or children if it helps them or other ‘prescribed bodies’ to:

    • make any decision assessment or plan or initiate or conduct any investigation or to provide any service, relating to the safety and welfare of the child or children
    • manage any risk to the child or children that might arise in the prescribed body’s capacity as an employer or designated agency.

    How information is exchanged

    Under Chapter 16A, information may be exchanged:

    • in writing - by letter, fax or email
    • orally over the phone or 
    • in person.

    Where information is exchanged orally, a written record of the information exchange must be made and retained on file. This written record must include details of the person information was exchanged with, the steps taken to confirm their identity, and the person who authorised the release of the information.


    Consent is not necessary for the exchange of information under Chapter 16A. However, a child or young person, or their parents and guardians, should be given an opportunity to express views on personal matters. 

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