Health Care Rights and Responsibilities » Human Rights

Guidelines and Policies

Your Health Rights and Responsibilities NSW
NSW Health
Your Health Rights and Responsibilities outlines NSW Health’s Public Patients’ Hospital Charter and Commitment to Service. It also incorporates the principles of the Australian Charter of Healthcare Rights and is consistent with the National Healthcare Agreement (NHCA) 2009.


Australian Charter of Health Care Rights Cth
Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care
The Australian Charter of Healthcare Rights describes the rights of patients and other people using the Australian health system. These rights are essential to make sure that, wherever and whenever care is provided, it is of high quality and is safe.

Disability Discrimination Act 1992 Cth
The DDA prohibits service providers (including health care service providers) from discriminating, directly or indirectly, against any person in the provision of services on the basis of their disability. This includes a requirement to make reasonable adjustments for people with a disability (for example wheelchair access and height adjustable examination beds).

International Convention on Economic Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) Art 12 UN
States recognise the right of everyone to the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health.

International Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) Art 12 UN
States must ensure equality of access to health care for men and women including appropriate maternal care.

International Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Racial Discrimination Art 5(e)(iv) UN
States must prohibit and eliminate all forms of discrimination on basis of race, colour or national or ethnic origin in public health and medical care.

Convention on the Rights of the Child (Art 24) UN
Recognise right of child to highest attainable standard of health. Must ensure no child is deprived of health care.

Convention of the Rights of Persons with Disability (CRPD) Art 25 UN
Obliges States to ensure equality of access to free and affordable health care, public health campaigns, and care specifically required for people with disability. Requires States to ensure treatment is with the consent of the patient and that medical practitioners are well trained regarding the dignity and human rights of people with disabilities.

Racial Discriminal Act 1975
Prohibits direct or indirect discriminatory treatment against a person on base of race, nationality, colour, descent or ethnic origin.

Sex Discrimination Act 1984 Cth
Prohibits discriminatory treatment, direct or indirect, on the basis of sex, a characteristic generally appertaining tor imputed to a person of that sex, including less favourable treatment on the grounds of pregnancy.

Papers, Reports and Books

Recommendations from The Medical Profession and Human Rights: handbook for a changing agenda UK
British Medical Association
The BMA provided online the recommendations from their handbook on the Medical Profession and Human Rights, covering issues such as torture, prison doctors, medicine in armed conflict, asylum seekers etc.

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