1.8 Advocacy and your rights
Your rights as a user of the Australian Healthcare system are contained in the Australian Charter of HealthCare Rights. Your rights as a carer are to be treated fairly and with respect, and not be discriminated against based on age, ethnicity, abilities, sexuality, gender/sexual preference.
Note: We value your feedback on our service – complete the Having Your Say Form available from PCSE
Your role as advocate
As carer, one of your important roles on the health care team might be as advocate – to speak on behalf of the person you care for. This might be to:
- ensure their rights and wishes are respected
- ensure they are treated with respect
- ensure their needs are being met
- ensure services are provided in a professional manner
- challenge any barriers or discrimination.
You can be an advocate during an appointment with a health professional or by telephone or email outside of a care meeting.
The Office of the Public Advocate can be contacted to act on your behalf on issues around care.
Telephone: 1300 309 337 or visit www.publicadvocate.vic.gov.au
You have the right to a second opinion. In summary:
- You have the right to ask a doctor for a second opinion if you are unsure about the doctor’s suggested medical treatment or a diagnosis
- Ask the doctor to give you a referral to another doctor or medical specialist
- Ask the doctor to send the other medical practitioner any test results or medical history
Making a complaint
See our brochure on Working Together in Partnership for details on how to make a complaint about a health service to the Office of the Health Complaints Commissioner – www.hcc.vic.gov.au or telephone 1300 582 113.
If the complaint relates to aged care services, refer to Seniors Rights Victoria. Telephone: 1300 368 821 or visit seniorsrights.org.au.