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Patient Charter

A guide for patients, carers and families

Mater respects your right to receive healthcare services. We are committed to provide exceptional, patient-focused, high quality and safe healthcare. In order to provide such care, a partnership between patients, carers and families and healthcare providers is essential. The Mater Patient Charter addresses rights and responsibilities with regard to access, safety, respect, communication, participation, privacy and comment. The Patient Charter explains what you can expect from us and what we expect from you as we strive to provide you with the best possible care.

This Patient Charter is also available in Arabic, Chinese and Vietnamese.

Mater Patient Charter

Everyone who is seeking or receiving care in the Australian health system has certain rights and responsibilities regarding the nature of that care. 

Access
I have a right to: I have a responsibility to:

Healthcare—I can access services to attend to my healthcare needs. While some expenses are covered by Medicare, if I activate my private health insurance cover or opt to self-fund I may choose my doctor, my hospital and convenient appointment times, potentially avoiding longer waits.

  • advise Mater of any change of address, GP details or contact details.
  • be aware that I may need to wait for attention at times if staff are attending to other patients
  • keep my appointments, or notify Mater if I am unable to attend.
  • accept that some services I require may not be available at this location.
Safety
I have a right to: I have a responsibility to:

Receive safe and high quality care—I receive safe and high quality health services, provided with professional care, skill and competence.

  • provide accurate information about my health and anything else that may have an impact on my care (including alternative/ complementary therapies).
  • tell staff of changes I notice in my medical condition.
  • tell staff if I have concerns regarding any aspects of my care.
Communication
I have a right to: I have a responsibility to:

Be informed about services, treatment, options and costs in a clear and open way—I receive open, timely and appropriate communication about my healthcare in a way I can understand.

  • be as open and honest as I can and ask for more information if I do not understand.
  • tell staff if English is not my first language so I can be given access to an interpreter in person or by phone.
  • understand that if I am not covered by Medicare (e.g. I am an overseas visitor) I will be responsible for payment of all relevant fees and charges.
  • understand that if I elect to be a private (chargeable) patient, I will be given information about costs and I will be responsible for paying my attending doctor/s and any other relevant charges.
Participation
I have a right to: I have a responsibility to:

Be included in decisions and choices about my care—I may join in making decisions and choices about my care and about health service planning, including my end of life care planning. I may choose to not accept the advice provided to me.  Regardless, I will be supported to make the healthcare decision that I consider is best for me.

  • ask questions so I can be informed about my medical condition and my care options before giving my consent to any treatment.
  • discuss my concerns and decisions with my healthcare provider, for example, if I do not wish to continue treatment,  I am unable to comply with treatment or  I intend to discharge myself against medical advice. Once I am made aware of the implications, I have to accept responsibility for the consequences of my decision.
  • provide a copy of my advanced care plan, advance health directives, enduring power of attorney or other legal documents which may be relevant. 
  • participate in my post-discharge care planning.
Respect
I have a right to: I have a responsibility to:

Be shown respect, dignity and consideration—the care provided shows respect to me and my culture, beliefs, personal needs and preferences.

  • tell staff of circumstances concerning my culture and beliefs so they can respond to my needs and preferences, but accept in some circumstances this may not be possible.
  • recognise Mater is a culturally diverse community where everyone should be treated with respect and dignity. 
  • respect other patients and staff, for example, by limiting noise and the number of visitors.
Privacy
I have a right to: I have a responsibility to:

Privacy and confidentiality of my personal information—my personal privacy is maintained and proper handling of my personal health and other information is assured.

  • accept that my health information may be shared with appropriate healthcare providers and other agencies as authorised by law.
  • ask for my recorded health information to be corrected if it is inaccurate.
  • respect the privacy and confidentiality of others.
Comment
I have a right to: I have a responsibility to:

Comment on my care and to have my concerns addressed—I can comment on or complain about my care and have my concerns investigated and responded to so that Mater can better understand my care experience and areas for improvement.

  • tell staff if I have a problem, concern or worry about my care and my safety so they can respond.
  • raise concerns about my care with the treating team.

Mater Mission

In the spirit of the Sisters of Mercy, Mater offers compassionate service to the sick and needy, promotes an holistic approach to healhcare in response to changing community needs and fosters high standards of health-related education and research. Followinig the example of Christ the Healer, we commit ourselves to offering these services to all, without discrimination.

We believe staff, patients, families and carers all have a mutual responsibility to treat each other with respect and dignity - a basic right of every human person.

Your Safety as a Patient - Patient and Carer Escalation (PACE)

We value your safety above all else.  We expect that your healthcare team can address any concerns or worries you may have about your care and immediate safety. It is important that you or your family/carers share any concerns as early as possible.

However, if your condition worsens and you or your family/carers are becoming increasingly alarmed, please:

  • Tell a nurse or doctor or ask to speak to a more senior nurse/midwife or doctor
  • Ask to see the Manager or to have another doctor review you.

If neither of these steps assist in alleviating the immediate concerns about your safety and you feel you are in immediate danger, please use your bedside phone.

  • Dial '555' - tell the operator that:
    • - you are placing a 'PACE' call (Patient and Carer Escalation)
    • - your name or the patient's name
    • - where you are (hospital name and room number).

A senior independent Nursing Manager will arrive to see you within 10 minutes.

Giving a compliment or making a complaint

Mater has systems in place for your comments to be taken seriously and acted upon. Your feedback, both positive and negative, is extremely valuable and helps us to continue to improve services.

If you are unhappy with any aspect of your care, you may initially discuss this with the person(s) caring for you or, if you are not satisfied with the response, you may discuss the matter with the Patient Representative.

You may also refer your complaints to the Office of the Health Ombudsman. This body is independent of the healthcare system and was established, among other things, to deal with complaints. The Commission may encourage you to speak with the Patient Representative first, if they consider it appropriate.

For issues relating to health information collection, access to records or correction of records, contact the Mater Privacy Coordinator.

Mater Patient Representative

Telephone: 07 3163 8303 Fax: 07 3163 8753
Email: patientrep@mater.org.au

Office of the Health Ombudsman

Telephone: 131 OHO (133 646)
Website: www.oho.qld.gov.au

Mater Privacy Coordinator

Telephone: 07 3163 2666 Fax: 07 3163 8104
Email: privacycoordinator@mater.org.au

You may also contact the Office of the Privacy Commissioner on 1300 363 992 or privacy@privacy.gov.au