health & wellbeing
You should be able to get access to the medical help that you need. Medical professionals who deal with you should also respect your rights. You have 10 basic rights when you’re being treated by any health provider. These are:
- The right to be treated with respect. This includes having your privacy respected, and having your cultural and religious needs, values and beliefs taken into account.
- The right to be free from discrimination, coercion, harassment and exploitation.
- The right to dignity and independence.
- The right to have services provided with reasonable care and skill. Your health provider should meet relevant standards, and meet your needs as much as possible.
- The right to effective communication, in a way that you understand.
- The right to be fully informed about your condition and your treatment.
- The right to make an informed choice and give informed consent. This means the health professional generally needs to get your agreement to any service they want to give you.
- The right to have support people around, except where there might be safety problems.
- You get all these rights when you’re participating in (or might participate in) teaching or research.
- You also have a right to complain about any medical professional.
For more information on your rights in healthcare, have a look at the Health and Disability Commission website.
Sometimes your health and wellbeing might be in danger because of other things you’re struggling with, like drugs or alcohol, or gambling. There’s help available for these kinds of problems, too.
In this section: