Concerns about your care

Any concerns you may have about your care and treatment can be discussed with a number of people involved in your care and treatment. You also have the right to make a complaint about any aspects of the services provided.

You can discuss your care and treatment by writing or speaking to:

  • The person in charge of the ward or service

  • The customer services manager:

    • Ashburton, Akaroa, Darfield, Ellesmere, Kaikoura, Oxford, Tuarangi & Waikari Hospitals - Ashburton, Akaroa, Darfield, Ellesmere, Kaikoura, Oxford, Tuarangi & Waikari Hospitals - 03 307 8450

    • Burwood Hospital - 03 383 6836

    • Canterbury Health Laboratories - 03 364 0388

    • Christchurch Hospital - 03 364 0843

    • Christchurch Women's Hospital - 03 364 4556

    • Mental Health Services - 03 339 1160

    • Older Persons Health Service - 03 339 1160

  • Via our website Feedback Form

  • OR
  • The Nationwide Health and Disability Advocacy Service on 03 377 7501 who can assist with your complaint. See below for more information about this service.

  • You may, go directly to the Health & Disability Commissioner's Office (09 373 1060 or 0800 11 22 33) with your concerns.

  • Personal information and your privacy

    The hospital maintains a record of your illness (es) and treatments and is required to keep this information confidential. There are clearly stated rules for the release of any information in the Health Information Privacy Code (1994) (HIP Code) and other legislation.

    As part of our commitment of protecting your privacy, we have a pamphlet which explains your rights and responsibilities, and our rights and responsibilities in relation to your personal health information.

    While in hospital, doctors, nurses and other therapists will discuss your illness and treatment with you, and with your consent, your family. The HIP Code sets out the rules, which allow you to have access to your personal medical record. If any part of your notes is withheld, you will be advised why and how you may appeal the decision. If you are in hospital, ask your doctor or nurse to arrange for you to see your medical record. If you have left the Hospital, telephone or write to the Health Information Officer.

    Parents may ask to see the notes of their children if under 16 years of age.

    If you disagree with anything written about you in your records, you have the right to request the removal or correction of any information. If your request is declined, you will be told why. You may appeal by writing to the Privacy Commissioner, PO Box 466, Auckland.

    Canterbury DHB has staff versed in the privacy legislation. Please ask ward staff how you can access a privacy officer.

    Consumers' rights

    The Code of Health and Disability Services Consumers' Rights (1996) applies to all health services and disability support services in New Zealand.

    The code of rights is available in many languages including Māori, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Somali, French and German on the Health and Disability Commissioner website.

    The purpose of the code is to promote and protect the rights of consumers, and to facilitate the fair and efficient resolution of complaints relating to any infringement of those rights.

    Health professionals and other providers, providing your care are required to adhere to the rights under this code. 

    These rights relate to:

    • Ensuring you are treated with respect, including your culture, values and beliefs, as well as personal privacy.

    • Ensuring you are treated fairly, and do not feel pressured into making decisions about your treatment with which you are not comfortable.

    • Your care and treatment support your right to dignity and independence.

    • All providers involved in your care work together to ensure you are treated with the care and skill required to meet your needs.

    • Your right to be listened to and understood. An interpreter can also be arranged to assist, by the nurse in charge.

    • You should have your condition and any tests fully explained to you, to allow you to make choices for treatment options. When treatments are explained to you, this should include likely benefits and side effects, who will provide these treatments and any costs you could incur. This should be in a form, manner and language you understand.

    • Proceeding with treatments is your decision and you also have the right to change your mind at any stage.

    • Your right to have a person of your choice present for support.

    Patient Advocacy Service

    This service is independent of Canterbury District Health Board. It is a free service and provides:

    • Information on Health and Disability Consumer Rights.

    • Assistance to the person to resolve the difficulty.

    • To raise with the health organisations and promote organisational change on issues which hinder appropriate care.

    The service can be contacted by phoning 03 377 7501 (leave a message on the answer phone if the office is unattended).

    Teaching and research (Christchurch Hospital only)

    Christchurch Hospital is closely associated with the Christchurch School of Medicine, and there are always students undergoing training in the hospital. Nurses, physiotherapists and others also receive their clinical training in Christchurch Hospital.

    You have the right to refuse permission for these students to be involved in your care or have access to your medical records. However, if students are involved, you can be assured your health information will be treated according to the same strict rules of confidentiality as applies with all healthcare professionals.​

    Concerns about your care
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    Page last reviewed: 30 January 2017