Code of Health and Disability Services Consumers' Rights
The Code of Health and Disability Services Consumers' Rights (the Code) establishes the rights of consumers, and the obligations and duties of providers to comply with the Code. It is a regulation under the Health and Disability Commissioner Act. The Code in full is set out below.
Health and Disability Commissioner (Code of Health and Disability Services Consumers' Rights) Regulations 1996
1. Consumers have rights and providers have duties:(1) Every consumer has the rights in this Code.
(2) Every provider is subject to the duties in this Code.
(3) Every provider must take action to—
2. Rights of consumers and duties of providers:
The rights of consumers and the duties of providers under this Code are as follows:Right 1
Right to be treated with respect
(1) Every consumer has the right to be treated with respect.
(2) Every consumer has the right to have his or her privacy respected.
(3) Every consumer has the right to be provided with services that take into account the needs, values, and beliefs of different cultural, religious, social, and ethnic groups, including the needs, values, and beliefs of Maori.
Right to freedom from discrimination, coercion, harassment, and exploitation
Every consumer has the right to be free from discrimination, coercion, harassment, and sexual, financial or other exploitation.
Right to dignity and independence
Every consumer has the right to have services provided in a manner that respects the dignity and independence of the individual.
Right to services of an appropriate standard
(1) Every consumer has the right to have services provided with reasonable care and skill.
(2) Every consumer has the right to have services provided that comply with legal, professional, ethical, and other relevant standards.
(3) Every consumer has the right to have services provided in a manner consistent with his or her needs.
(4) Every consumer has the right to have services provided in a manner that minimises the potential harm to, and optimises the quality of life of, that consumer.
(5) Every consumer has the right to co-operation among providers to ensure quality and continuity of services.
Right to be fully informed
(1) Every consumer has the right to the information that a reasonable consumer, in that consumer's circumstances, would expect to receive, including—
(3) Every consumer has the right to honest and accurate answers to questions relating to services, including questions about—
(4) Every consumer has the right to receive, on request, a written summary of information provided.
(1) Services may be provided to a consumer only if that consumer makes an informed choice and gives informed consent, except where any enactment, or the common law, or any other provision of this Code provides otherwise.
(2) Every consumer must be presumed competent to make an informed choice and give informed consent, unless there are reasonable grounds for believing that the consumer is not competent.
(3) Where a consumer has diminished competence, that consumer retains the right to make informed choices and give informed consent, to the extent appropriate to his or her level of competence.
(4) Where a consumer is not competent to make an informed choice and give informed consent, and no person entitled to consent on behalf of the consumer is available, the provider may provide services where—
(6) Where informed consent to a health care procedure is required, it must be in writing if—
(8) Every consumer has the right to express a preference as to who will provide services and have that preference met where practicable.
(9) Every consumer has the right to make a decision about the return or disposal of any body parts or bodily substances removed or obtained in the course of a health care procedure.
(10) No body part or bodily substance removed or obtained in the course of a health care procedure may be stored, preserved, or used otherwise than
Every consumer has the right to have one or more support persons of his or her choice present, except where safety may be compromised or another consumer's rights may be unreasonably infringed.
(2) Every consumer may make a complaint to—
(4) Every provider must inform a consumer about progress on the consumer's complaint at intervals of not more than 1 month.
(5) Every provider must comply with all the other relevant rights in this Code when dealing with complaints.
(6) Every provider, unless an employee of a provider, must have a complaints procedure that ensures that—
3. Provider compliance
(1) A provider is not in breach of this Code if the provider has taken reasonable actions in the circumstances to give effect to the rights, and comply with the duties, in this Code.
(2) The onus is on the provider to prove it took reasonable actions.
(3) For the purposes of this clause, the circumstances means all the relevant circumstances, including the consumer's clinical circumstances and the provider's resource constraints.
4. DefinitionsIn this Code, unless the context otherwise requires,—
Advance directive means a written or oral directive—
optimise the quality of life means to take a holistic view of the needs of the consumer in order to achieve the best possible outcome in the circumstances
privacy means all matters of privacy in respect of the consumer, other than matters of privacy that may be the subject of a complaint under Part VII or Part VIII of the Privacy Act 1993 or matters to which Part X of that Act relates
provider means a health care provider or disability services provider
research means health research or disability research
rights includes rights corresponding to the duties in this Code
services means health services, or disability services, or both; and includes health care procedures
teaching includes training of providers.