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A guide for patients, carers and families

This Charter of Healthcare Rights describes what you or someone you care for can expect when receiving health care. These rights apply to all people in all places where healthcare is provided in Australia.  At Mater we are committed to providing safe, high quality, patient-centred care.  We will support you to understand and exercise your healthcare rights, your goals of care and what matters to you.

This Charter also outlines how you or someone you care for can provide feedback, access personal health information or raise concerns about your care or immediate safety (PACE).  

This Patient Charter is also available in Arabic, Chinese and Vietnamese.

Mater Patient Charter

Everyone who is seeking or receiving care in the Australian health system has certain rights and responsibilities regarding the nature of that care.

I have a right to: I have a responsibility to:

Healthcare—Healthcare services and treatment that meets my needs.

  • tell Mater about any change to my personal details, including address, my GP details, or contact details.
  • keep my appointments or notify Mater if I am unable to attend.
  • be aware that I may have to wait for attention at times if staff are attending to other patients.
  • understand that some services I require may not be available at this location.
I have a right to: I have a responsibility to:

Receive safe and high quality careReceive safe, high-quality health care in an environment that makes me feel safe and meets National Standards. Raise concerns about my safety through PACE 

  • provide accurate information about my health and anything else that may impact my care (including alternative/ complementary therapies) social issues).
  • inform staff of changes I notice in my medical condition.
  • inform staff if I have concerns regarding any aspects of my care.


I have a right to: I have a responsibility to:

Be informed about my condition, services available, the possible benefits and risks of different tests and treatment options so I can give my informed consent.

Receive support with accessing my health information.

Receive open and honest communication in the event of a clinical incident which may occur during my health care journey. How it happened, how it may affect me, and what is being improved to make care safe.

  • ask questions so I can be informed about my medical condition, my goals of care, and treatment options before giving my consent to any treatment.
  • be as open and honest as I can and ask for more information if I do not understand.
  • tell staff if English is not my first language so I can be given access to an interpreter in person or by phone.
I have a right to: I have a responsibility to:

Be included in decisions and choices about my goals of care and what matters to me—ask questions and be involved in open and honest communication.Request others be included in planning my care and decision making.

Choose to not accept the advice provided to me.  Regardless, I will be supported to make the healthcare decision that I consider is best for me.


  • discuss my concerns and decisions with my healthcare provider, e.g. if I do not wish to continue treatment, I am unable to accept/comply with treatment advice offered, or I intend to discharge myself against medical advice. Once I am made aware of the implications, I accept responsibility for the consequences of my decision.
  • provide a copy of my advanced care plan, advance health directives, enduring power of attorney, statement of choices or other legal documents which may be relevant.
  • participate in making plans for my care after I leave hospital.
I have a right to: I have a responsibility to:

Be shown respect, dignity and consideration—have my culture, background and beliefs and choices recognised so staff can respond to my needs and preferences and accept in some circumstances this may not be possible.

  • recognise Mater is a diverse community where everyone is treated with respect and dignity.
  • respect other patients and staff, e.g. by limiting noise and the number of visitors.
I have a right to: I have a responsibility to:

Have my personal privacy respected—have my personal information kept secure and confidential.   

  • accept that my health information may be shared with healthcare providers and other agencies as authorised by law.
  • ask for my recorded health information to be corrected if it is inaccurate.
  • respect the privacy and confidentiality of others.

Financial information 

I have a right to: I have a responsibility to:

Be informed about costs and charges that may occur as part of my treatment or hospitalisation

  • understand that while some expenses are covered by Medicare, if I activate my private health insurance cover or opt to self-fund, I may choose my doctor, my hospital and convenient appointment times, potentially avoiding longer waits.
  • understand that if I elect to be a private patient, I will be given information about costs and I will be responsible for paying my attending doctor/s and other relevant charges.
  • understand that if I am not covered by Medicare (e.g. I am an overseas visitor) I will be responsible for payment of all relevant fees and charges.
Give Feedback
I have a right to: I have a responsibility to:

Comment on my care and to have my concerns addressed and responded to in a transparent and timely way without it affecting the way I am treated

  • Inform staff if I have a problem, concern or worry about my care and my safety so they can respond.
  • raise concerns about my care with the treating team.

Mater Mission

In the Spirit of the Sisters of Mercy, Mater offers compassionate service to the sick and needy, promotes a holistic approach to healthcare in response to changing community needs and fosters high standards of health-related education and research.  Following the example of Christ the Healer, we commit ourselves to offering these services to all, without discrimination.

We believe staff, patients, families and carers all have a mutual responsibility to treat each other with respect and dignity – a basic right of every person.

Your Safety, Our Priority—Patient and Carer Escalation (PACE)*

*PACE is the equivalent to Ryan’s Rule which is used by Queensland Health.

We value your safety above all else. We expect your healthcare team to address any concerns or worries you may have about your care and immediate safety. Patients, families, or carers have a right to further escalate their concerns and we encourage you to speak to staff as early as possible if you have concerns about your care or safety.

If you have serious or immediate concerns about your health, please follow the steps outlined below: 

Step 1: Speak to your nurse or doctor, who will listen and respond to your concerns.

If you are unsatisfied with the response and are still concerned, move to step 2.

Step 2: Ask to speak to the nurse/midwifery team leader or nurse/midwifery unit manager.

If you are unsatisfied with the response, and are still concerned, move to step 3.

Step 3: 

  • Activate a PACE
  • Dial 555 from a bed side phone or call 07 3163 8555.
  • Tell the operator "I am using PACE", your name, ward, bed number and doctors name, if known.
  • A senior member of stall will see you within 10 minutes.

*PACE is the equivalent to Ryan's Rule as used by Queensland Health.

Giving feedback

We welcome your feedback as it helps us continue to improve.

Give a compliment: Everyone enjoys receiving positive feedback, and we are no exception. If you have received exceptional service, we would love to hear about it.

Making a complaint: If you are unhappy with any aspect of your care, please let us know so we have the opportunity to set things right.

To give a compliment or make a complaint, please follow the steps below:

  • Discuss your feedback with the person/s caring for you
  • Request to speak to the manager of the ward/unit area
  • Call 07 3163 8303 or email patientrep@mater.org.au and request that you are contacted to discuss your compliment or complaint  
  • If you do not believe we have resolved your complaint, you can contact the Office of the Health Ombudsman. This is an independent body and can be contacted on 131 OHO (131 646) or www.oho.qld.gov.au.

Patient Experience Survey

If you provided consent and your email address on the Patient Declaration and Consent form, you will receive an online survey that uses the Australian Hospital Patient Experience Question Set to tell us about your experience at Mater.

Accessing personal health information

For issues relating to health information collection, access to records or correction of records, contact the Mater Privacy Coordinator via. 

Telephone: 07 3163 2666   

Fax: 07 3163 8104   

Email: privacycoordinator@mater.org.au

Mater Switchboard: 07 3163 8111

You may also contact the Office of the Privacy Commissioner on 1300 363 992 or privacy@privacy.gov.au

Help Mater to improve with consumer involvement

We need your help to design better ways to provide healthcare, to comment on our policies and procedures, measure and evaluate how we are doing, and make decisions about our future.

If you are interested in volunteering your time as a member of Mater’s Community of Consumers, please email consumers@mater.org.au

Mercy. Dignity. Care. Commitment. Quality