Legal Rights

Whenever you use a health or disability service in New Zealand, you are protected by the Code of Health and Disability Services Consumers' Rights (Code of Rights). It gives you as a patient, the right to be treated with respect, receive appropriate care, have proper communication, and be fully informed so you can make an informed choice.

Here's a summary of your rights as a patient:

  • You must always be treated with respect.
  • You should never be discriminated against, or pressured into anything, or taken advantage of.
  • The services you receive should respect your dignity and independence.
  • You must be treated with reasonable care and skill and receive well co-ordinated services.
  • Service providers must listen to you and give you clear information that you can understand. If you don't understand, you must feel comfortable about asking questions. This may require the services of an interpreter.
  • Your treatment must be fully explained to you, including the benefits, risks, alternatives, and costs, and your questions must be answered honestly.
  • You must be able to make your own decisions about your treatment, and be free to change your mind.
  • You can (almost) always have a support person with you if you wish.
  • These rights also apply if you are asked to take part in research or teaching.
  • You have the right to make a notification and have it taken seriously.

Collection of Health Information and Privacy

Health information is collected for your care and treatment, it is stored securely and only authorised staff can access it. It is normal practice to give necessary and relevant information about you to your GP and/or other health professionals/agencies in order to deliver appropriate health services to you. If you do not wish this to happen, please make our staff aware.

You can also request access to your information and may request correction of it if necessary, please ask staff for an “Access to Clinical Information Request” form.

If you have a concern relating to a privacy issue please contact our Chief Executive Officer or the Privacy commission 0800 803 909 or via the website


You have the right to make a complaint about any aspects of the services provided. Complaints provide us with an opportunity to continually assess and improve our service.

View our Complaints and Compliments page to lodge a complaint.

Or alternatively, you can discuss your care and treatment by either writing to the CEO;

Gary Reed - Acting Chief Executive Officer

Clutha Health First, PO Box 46, Balclutha 9240

Phone 03 419 0500; email:

Or contact the Health and Disability Commissioner 0800112 233

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Phone: 03 419 0500     Email:
Location: 9-11 Charlotte Street, Balclutha