Proactive Perio Charter of Rights
Abbreviations used in this document:
ACHR = Australian Charter of Healthcare Rights
APHRA = Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency
Within Australia, the Australian Charter of Healthcare Rights (ACHR) applies to the entire healthcare system, and it allows patients, consumers, families, carers and healthcare providers to have a common understanding of the rights of people receiving healthcare. The rights included in the ACHR relate to access to appointments, safety, respect, communication, participation, privacy and comment.
Proactive Perio has adopted the following Charter of Patient Rights consistent with the Australian Charter of Healthcare Rights.
Access – You have a right to access services to attend to your healthcare needs.
As part of our responsibility to access rights, we aim to provide you where possible with appointments suit your schedule and treatment needs. As part of your access rights, it is your responsibility to attend for any scheduled appointments and notify us with at least 48 hours’ notice where this appointment cannot be met.
To assist you in attending and/or rescheduling your appointments, we may provide a reminder service via:
- Telephone call
- SMS to your mobile phone
We will endeavour to provide you with the same notice period if we have to make a change to your appointment.
We reserve time in our schedules to assist in treating emergencies on the same day.
We aim to see you on time for your appointment and make every effort possible not to run late. There may be occasions where this may happen, and we will inform you if this is the case.
To ensure your safety while you are under our care, it is your responsibility to inform us as soon as possible of any changes to your name, address, medical history, GP details and contact information.
Safety – You have a right to receive safe and high-quality health services
We aim to provide you with appropriate dental services in a safe, secure and supportive environment within our scope of practice as defined by APHRA. You have a right to expect to be treated with professional care, skill and competence.
As part of your responsibility towards your safety, you are required to provide a medical history as accurately and thoroughly as possible to allow us to identify any potential issues that may arise while delivering dental treatment.
It is your right to refuse to provide a medical history, however, as part of our responsibility for your safety, you may be refused treatment at the practice, as without a health history we place both you and our health professionals at risk of an adverse event.
If an adverse event occurs, we have a responsibility to be open and honest in communications with you, your family or carers if applicable.
Should an adverse event occur, it is our responsibility, in accordance with the Dental Board of Australia’s Code of Conduct for Registered Health Practitioners, to explain to you what happened and why, as well as offering support and advice concerning how the situation can best be resolved or managed.
We will act immediately to rectify the problem, if possible, including seeking any necessary help and advice to explain to you, in sufficient detail, so that you understand what has occurred, including the anticipated
- Short-term and long-term consequences
- Acknowledge any distress and provide appropriate support
- Develop a future management plan for you if required
- Ensure that you have has access to information about the process for making a complaint
- Sufficient detail is to be recorded in your records to reflect the information provided to you about the incident, associated risks and likely consequences. The dental practitioner will notify the ccurrence of the adverse event to their professional body.
Respect – You have the right to be shown respect, dignity and consideration in providing treatment including respect for your culture, believes and personal opinions
We value you as a unique individual and hope that at all times, we can provide dental treatment in a manner that is respectful of your culture, beliefs, values and personal characteristics. We also ask you in return to reciprocate the same respect to our staff and health care providers.
Communication and decision making
We respect your right to receive adequate information to make informed decisions regarding your health and oral care. Consequently, all staff will continually demonstrate a commitment to providing you with accessible and understandable information about your treatment and treatment options, including costs, proposed medications and risks involved. This should also include maintaining suitable evidence so that you are fully informed about any proposed treatment and have been a partner in the development of your treatment plan.
We encourage you to actively participate in decisions and choices about your treatment and dental needs. For extensive treatment plans, we also encourage you to involve your partner/family or carer in the decision-making process.
Informed Consent Process
The initial consultation at the practice shall be considered ‘implied consent’ to that procedure based on the booking of an appointment and attendance. Any subsequent treatment shall require you to make an informed decision and consent to the treatment either verbally or in writing, depending on the procedure and associated risks. The dental practitioner who is to perform the treatment is responsible for following our informed consent process in line with the Dental Board of Australia’s Code of Conduct for Registered Health Practitioners.
- Receive information either verbally or in writing about procedures, the possible risks and benefits of the treatment in a form or manner that you understand
- Be informed of the risks and benefits of all options (including no treatment)
- Be afforded the opportunity to ask questions and receive answers that meet with your satisfaction
- Be afforded sufficient time (if needed) to discuss the treatment plan with your partner/family, carer or advisor, especially for complex treatment plans
- Be fully informed the cost of treatment and payment options
- Be able to use the information provided to you to help you make a decision you believe is in your best interest, in the absence of any coercion from the dental practitioner
- Be afforded the opportunity to communicate your decisions to the dental practitioner either verbally or in writing
- We take full responsibility for making sure our clinical notes are up to date, accurate and contemporaneous according to the guidelines set by our governing body. You have full access rights to any information we hold about you and have the right to a copy of this information.
In accordance with the Commonwealth Privacy Act 1988, the Dental Board of Australia’s Code of Conduct for Registered Health Practitioners, the Office of the Privacy Commissioner National Privacy Principles September 2001, you can expect that your personal health and other information will be collected, used, disclosed and stored in accordance with relevant laws about privacy and that this information will remain confidential unless the law allows disclosure or you direct us to release the information.
All information collected from you will be used for the purpose of providing treatment. Personal information such as name, address and health insurance details will be used for the purpose of addressing accounts to you, as well as processing payments and writing to you about any issues affecting your treatment.
We may need to disclose your health information to other health care professionals or require it from them if, in our judgement, it is necessary for the context of your treatment such as a referral to a specialist or doctor. In this event, disclosure of personal details will be minimised wherever possible.
Your medical history, treatment records, x-rays and any other material relevant to treatment will be kept and remain in a secure environment. Digital data is continually backed up and maintained off-site.
Under the privacy law, you have the right of access to dental information held about you by this practice.
We welcome you to inspect or request copies of your treatment records at any time, or seek an explanation from the dentist. The following procedure has been developed to ensure that all requests for access are dealt with as efficiently as possible:
All requests for access (other than straightforward requests for copies of test or treatment results made to your dentist during your consultation) should be made in writing using (where available) a Request for Release of Dental Records Form.
- Requests for access will be acknowledged within two days of the receipt of the request.
- Where it is not possible for access to be granted within 30 days, you will be notified/advised when and if access will be granted.
- Where access is refused, you will be advised in writing of the reasons for refusal. This will include any information about other means by which access may be facilitated.
- You are not permitted to remove any of the original contents of your dental file (including X rays) from the practice, nor are you permitted to alter or erase information contained in the dental record. However, if any of the information we have about you is inaccurate, you are encouraged to ask us to alter your records accordingly, in writing.
- Generally, you will be required to collect your records in person. However, in some limited circumstances, you may request in writing that records are provided to another party.
- If you, or another authorised person, is collecting a copy of dental records, they may be required to provide identification. Where possible, this should be photographic identification.
Comment / Feedback – You have the right to comment on your care and to have your concerns addressed.
Your evaluation of the care received at our practice is an extremely important form of feedback that provides us with valuable information about the services we provide.
We encourage you to provide both positive and negative feedback. All staff receive training and support that will assist them to identify, report and appropriately respond to comments/feedback from you.
We commit to act upon any feedback, positive or negative received.
In the event of a complaint, we shall act in an appropriate manner following our complaint handling policy. We will:
- Provide a safe, confidential environment for you to share your comments with us directly while respecting your rights to have a concern heard by an independent third party.
- Resolve the complaint at the lowest level possible and within the shorted time frame.
- You will be required to place serious complaints or requests for refunds in writing
- Notify and seek advice from our professional bodies to help resolve any complaints