After you have taken steps to take care of your health, you should think about what you want to do next. You should think about what you want to happen. You might want:
- an explanation and apology – before you think of getting compensation, other things like a full explanation or an apology are important. Speaking with the relevant medical staff (even if you are not completely satisfied with their response) is an important step in trying to understand what transpired and why.
- informal help – if you were treated in a public hospital you can speak to the Patient Liaison Officer. You may also wish to make a written complaint to hospital management. This may lead to you being given some explanation as to what happened.
- to consider the Complaints procedure – you can make a formal complaint to a government entity, the Health Ombudsman. They may then investigate your case and provide an explanation about what has occurred. This may even be done through a “conciliation process” with the doctor involved. The Ombudsman has the power if they feel it is required to refer the health care provider for disciplinary action to the relevant medical board. They may also suggest to the doctor that they make an apology to you.
- to seek a copy of your medical file – you are entitled to a copy of your file from both the hospital (under their administrative access policies) and other health care providers (under the Privacy Act).
- speak with a lawyer – get some guidance early about the steps you should tyke to protect your interests and preserve your entitlement to claim compensation if you need to.
Call us now for a free initial consultation to learn more about your rights and remedies.