Patient’s rights and responsibilities

Code of Rights and Responsibilities

All patients and families receiving Mary Potter Hospice Palliative Care Services have a right to be notified of their rights and responsibilities before Hospice/ Palliative Care begins. All patients and families have the right to exercise those rights, and all decisions and choices they make will guide their Hospice care.


  • To receive care from the Hospice’s services regardless of ethnicity, religion, gender, or sexual identification
  • To be treated in a considerate, respectful manner with recognition of your personal dignity and respect of personal property
  • To be treated without discrimination. Coercion, harassment or exploitation.


Fair Treatment

  • To privacy with the understanding that discussion, consultation, examination and treatment are confidential to Mary Potter Hospice staff and to those other healthcare professional involved in your care, e.g. your GP, your District Nurses, or hospital staff.


Proper Standards

  • To care that meets profession standards by staff who are properly training and competent to perform their duties
  • To be treated with skill and care in a way that reflects your needs within the resources available at Mary potter Hospice
  • To have appropriate arrangements made with other healthcare providers for your ongoing support and follow-up care
  • To proper identification by name and professional status of individuals providing care. You have the right to know the existence of any professional relationship among people who are treating you as well as the relationship to any other healthcare or educational institution involved in your care.



  • To be listened to, understand and receive information in whatever way you need. When it is necessary and practicable, an interpreter should be available
  • To be informed of the state of your health and/ or explanation of your condition
  • To receive appropriate instruction and education for your care
  • To receive information on the Hospices policies and procedures
  • To consult with other specialists at your request, and expense
  • To have your personal information held in confidence, in accordance with the Health Information Privacy Code (1994). Information may be shared with the wider care team (e.g. GPs or District Nurses) and can be used for monitoring and providing ongoing palliative care for you. Sometimes this information is used for training of health professionals or health research, in a manner which does not reveal your identity, and for administration purposes of Mary Potter Hospice
  • To see your personal information – please ask to speak to the Chief Executive, telephone 04 389 5017. In certain circumstances, you may correct personal information held by Mary Potter Hospice unless it is supplied in confidence by another person or Mary potter Hospice is otherwise authorised in law to withhold it
  • To withhold any information from Mary Potter Hospice (however, withholding information may jeopardise the ability of the Hospice to provide adequate palliative care and treatment). Please note, if you are unable to provide any information, the Hospice may seek information about you from family, friends, relatives and other persons whom the Hospice believes may be able to assist.


Informed Consent

  • To be informed of your medical condition and proposed treatment and to all information in your medical records
  • To make informed choice about treatment and care options (the benefits, side effects, complications, and/ or risks) and to give consent prior to any procedure or service, treatment or assessment occurring
  • To be informed of the results of tests and procedures
  • To participate in the planning and in changes in the plan of your care, and to informed participation in all decisions involving your care
  • To withhold or withdraw consent should you choose. If you decline to undergo treatment/ assessment it is understood that you will take responsibility for your decision and its consequences
  • To refuse services to the extent permitted by New Zealand law
  • To leave the Hospice against the Doctor’s advice and to be informed of the risks involved in this action; Please note if you are unable to make an informed choice and give informed consent (e.g. if you are unconscious) health professionals will ask a person entitled to consent on your behalf or act with your best interests in mind.



  • To have your own support person or people with you and present during discussions about your treatment or condition as long as it is safe and other peoples rights are not unreasonable affected.


Teaching and Research

  • Mary Potter Hospice is a teaching and research facility. As a patient you may be invited to assist with surveys and/ or with the teaching of medical and nursing students by consenting to be involved. You are free to decline or withdraw your consent at any time without prejudice to your care.



  • Throughout the year students in health-related disciplines visit and work in the Inpatient Unit under the supervision of our staff. If a student is assisting in your care, your permission will be asked.



  • From time to time, health professionals undertake research at the Hospice. Your full co-operation and understanding will be sought before any involvement in research projects.



  • As part if the Hospice Quality Improvement programme, you or your family or friends may be asked for consent to be interviewed whilst at the Inpatient Unit or at your home. A postal survey may be sent to you. These anonymous interviews are designed to make sure the Hospice meets the needs of our patients. We value your comments, however you are under no obligation to participate.


Comments or Complaints

  • To make a complaint, either verbally or in writing, about any aspect of your care and to have any complaint investigated fairly, thoroughly and speedily according to the Mary Potter Hospice Complaints Policy
  • To be informed of the progress and (where appropriate) the results of the investigations of your complaint
  • To make comments of suggestions on any aspect of our services; Mary Potter Hospice assures you that such communication from you will in no way prejudice your care. You are entitled to be assisted by the Clinical manager or Chief Executive Officer in making any compliant of comment. You can do this through discussion with your Palliative Care Coordinator, or by contacting the Chief Executive Officer, phone 04 389 5017 or at PO Box 7442, Wellington South 6242. If you are dissatisfield with the outcome of the investigate complaint, you may consult a Health and Disability Commissioner Advocate, phone 0800 11 22 33 or make a complaint to the Health and Disability Commissioner, PO Box 12299, Thorndon, Wellington 6144.


What we ask of you, your family, whānau and friends

  • To respect the safety of all Mary Potter Hospice staff involved in your care while they are in your home
  • To provide to the best of your knowledge, information that is accurate and complete with regard to past illness, present complaints and all other healthcare related problems
  • To consider other patients at Mary potter Hospice with particular regard to safety measures e.g. observing the No Smoking areas, limiting noise and the number of visitors
  • To inform staff if you no longer require or wish to continue palliative care treatment or services.



We consider it very important that you and your family/ whānau  know what you feel you need to know, whether it be in aspects of your condition and care, or things about Mary Potter Hospice. Please feel free to ask any questions you have.