Patient Rights and Responsibilities

BRHS supports patients and the users of our services to understand their rights and responsibilities.

The Australian Charter of Healthcare Rights was developed by the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Healthcare and was launched in July 2008 after input from a wide range of sources including health sector, government and health consumer groups.

The aim of the Charter is to provide a consistent understanding of, and approach to, healthcare rights across Australia.

Access: a right to access health care.
Safety: a right to receive safe and high quality health care.
Respect: a right to be shown respect, and to be treated with dignity and consideration.
Communication: a right to be informed about services, treatment, options and costs in a clear and open way.
Participation: a right to be included in decisions and to make choices about your health care.
Privacy: a right to privacy and confidentiality of your personal information.
Comment: a right to comment on your health care, and to have your concerns addressed.

BRHS encourages all people using the service to be respectful of staff and other visitors and support our commitment to an aggression-free environment.

We also encourage all users of the service to be patient when the wait time is longer than you would like. We appreciate that this can be frustrating and appreciate your understanding at these times.

To help achieve the best outcomes from your hospital stay, it is also important that you:

  • provide accurate and complete information
  • understand your treatment
  • be aware of your rights
  • follow the prescribed treatment, and to ask questions if unsure and report any changes in your condition
  • tell staff about any special needs that are important to your culture or religion/spirituality, and
  • Respect those around you.

We encourage you to speak with a staff member if you have any questions or would like a copy of the Australian Charter of Healthcare Rights.

Health Requests information page

BRHS provides the public with access to both their medical records and those of their relatives as required under the Freedom of Information Act 1982.

Requests for information may include:

  • copies of medical records
  • summaries of medical records, or
  • time of birth
  • All requests must be received in writing and the applicable form. See Word and PDF versions above.

Charges associated with requests include:

  • Standard Application Fee – $28.40
  •  Photocopying – 20 cents per A4 page, and
  • Supervision (enabling you to view your record rather than receive a printed copy) – $5 per quarter hour or part thereof.

The standard application fee may be waived for applicants who can provide a photocopy of their certified Social Security card (ie. Pension or Healthcare card). This is not applicable for Time of Birth requests

As required under the Freedom of Information Act, requests will receive attention as soon as possible but not later than 30 days.

Privacy of Information

Bairnsdale Regional Health Service is committed to protecting the privacy of your personal information and we work hard to embed a respect for privacy into our culture.

  • We are required by law to protect personal information and comply with the Health Records Act 2001 (HRA) and other information relating to confidentiality and privacy.
  • In accordance with Part II of the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act 1982, we are also required to publish certain statements relating to our functions, processes and documents held:  Freedom of Information Statement 11 Publication of Information
  • Strict guidelines are followed in relation to the collection, use and storage of personal information with only appropriately authorised staff having access to your information.
  • Our focus is always on providing you with best possible treatment and care and we only gather personal information that is necessary to achieving this.
  • Your permission is required before we will share your information with others including your family members and other health professionals (such as your GP or specialist). There may be times however where we might be required to release information to assist with your care without first obtaining your permission for example, in an emergency situation.
  • You have the right to access your medical record and personal information held by the BRHS.
  • If you identify information that is incorrect or you do not agree with, you have the right to request that it be amended in a timely manner.

Access to your information

The Freedom of Information Act 1982 sets out your right to access your medical record and personal information held by BRHS. If you would like access to your Medical Record you can contact the Chief Health Information Manager.  

If you identify information that is incorrect or you do not agree with, you have the right to request that it be amended.  This can be arranged through the Chief Health Information Manager who can be contacted on 03 5150 3333.

Need more information?

If you have further questions or would like to request access to your information contact the Chief Health Information Manager. Other useful information can be found at the following locations:

The Department of Health also provides an overview of the Victorian Health Records Act here.

Privacy and Data Protection Act 2014