Support & Advocacy

Support and advocacy is a very important aspect of health in New Zealand.  Everyone using a health or disability service has the protection of a Code of Rights.  An independent Commissioner promotes these rights under a New Zealand law called the Health and Disability Commissioner Act 1994.


The Code of Health and Disability Services Consumers' Rights 1996 specifies patients' rights when receiving healthcare services. These are:

  • Right 1:   Right to be treated with respect
  • Right 2:   Right to freedom from discrimination, coercion, harassment and exploitation
  • Right 3:   Right to dignity and independence
  • Right 4:   Right to services of an appropriate standard
  • Right 5:   Right to effective communication
  • Right 6:   Right to be fully informed
  • Right 7:   Right to make an informed choice and give informed consent
  • Right 8:   Right to support
  • Right 9:   Rights in respect of teaching or research
  • Right 10:  Right to complain


Further information may be obtained on the Health & Disability Commissioner's website

Last updated: October 15, 2015