Government health services are required to have a customer charter that assures customers are treated fairly, equitably and with dignity.
Most difficulties with health services can be resolved by talking directly to the service provider and most major hospitals have a complaints officer you can contact. However, there are various agencies available to help and advise consumers who have a complaint or concern about a health service.
THE WESTERN AUSTRALIAN PUBLIC PATIENTS' HOSPITAL CHARTER
Pamphlets in languages other than English:
HEALTH AND DISABILITY SERVICES COMPLAINTS OFFICE
The Health and Disability Services Complaints Office is an independent and impartial agency. If you cannot resolve your complaint directly with the service provider, you can contact HaDSCO to discuss your concerns and find out more about the complaints resolution services they offer. All their services are confidential and free of charge.
Health and Disability Services Complaints Office
Level 12, 44 St. Georges Terrace
PERTH WA 6000
PO Box B61
PERTH WA 6838
Tel: (08) 9323 0600
Fax: (08) 9221 3675
Country Freecall 1800 813 583
HEALTH CONSUMERS' COUNCIL WA
The Council is an independent body that seeks to ensure the views and concerns of health consumers are considered in the planning, development, provision and review of health services.
Health Consumers' Council WA
Units 13/14 Wellington Fair
4 Lord Street
PERTH WA 6000
Tel: (08) 9221 3422
THE COUNCIL OF OFFICIAL VISITORS
This is a group of people appointed from the community to inspect facilities where involuntary mental health patients are cared for, to ensure they have been informed of their rights and their accommodation is suitable and safe. Official Visitors can listen to or deal with complaints from patients, relatives or carers.
Council of Offical Visitors
Unit 1/18 Harvest Terrace (cnr Hay St)
WEST PERTH WA 6005
Tel: (08) 9226 3266
Freecall 1800 999 057
MENTAL HEALTH REVIEW BOARD
The Board conducts reviews of involuntary patients detained in authorised mental health facilities or on community treatment orders, to ensure the best treatment is being provided. A request for a review of an involuntary patient's case can be made at any time.
Mental Health Review Board
Level 4, 12 St George's Terrace
PERTH WA 6000
Tel: (08) 9219 3162
PERSONAL HEALTH RECORDS
Individuals have a legal right to their personal records held by public health services and hospitals. Applications should be made directly to the hospital or health service where the records are held.
Many health professionals need to be registered to be able to practise in some health professions in WA. Registration boards exist for most health professions to administer professional requirements and conduct. Refer to the white pages (under the 'Professions' title).
Medicare is a Commonwealth and State funded public health care system. It provides free treatment for public patients in public hospitals and free or subsidised care by providers such as doctors and specialists.
Medicare Customer Service Centre
Tel: 13 2011
PHARMACEUTICAL BENEFITS SCHEME (PBS)
This scheme subsidises the cost of most essential medicines available on prescription. Holders of Centerlink concession cards may be entitled to an additional subsidy for PBS medicines. Ask your doctor or chemist about medicines covered by the scheme.
Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme
Tel: 13 2290
PRIVATE HEALTH INSURANCE
Private health insurers offer cover for medical services not covered by Medicare, like private hospital cover, dental, physiotherapy and ambulance services. Tax incentives are offered for people with recognised private health cover.
There are a number of professional organisations which play an important role in setting and maintaining professional standards in health care. Some of the professional organisations involved with public health services are listed under this section.
TRANSLATING AND INTERPRETING
If you have language difficulties and you require an interpreter to use the public health services listed in this directory, ask the health service provider to contact the Translating & Interpreting Service (TIS) on 13 14 50 to help with communication. Government health services have a responsibility to ensure that people have access to interpreters if required.
Also, important health information which may be helpful to you may be available in your language. Ask the health service provider to check if the information can be accessed in your language.