Patient rights and responsibilities

Zuid-Afrikaans Hospital adheres to the National Patient’s Rights Charter and supports the Batho Pele principles.

Patients & Visitors


Preparing for your hospital visit

  • Information needed for your medical aid
  • What to get from your medical aid
  • What to bring

During your stay

  • Your hospital room
  • Identification
  • Valuables
  • Meals
  • Television

Discharge and feedback

Know your finances

Zuid-Afrikaans Hospital subscribes to the National Patient’s Rights Charter as published by the Health Professions Council of South Africa.

The Department of Health, in consultation with various other bodies, developed a National Patients’ Rights Charter. The document contained herein was launched by the Minister of Health and agreed to by the HPCSA.  To ensure the realisation of the right of access to health care services as guaranteed in the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, 1996 (Act No. 109 of 1996), the Department of Health is committed to upholding, promoting and protecting this right and, therefore, proclaims this Patients’ Rights  Charter as a common standard for achieving the realisation of this right.

Patients’ rights

Healthy and safe environment
Everyone has a right to a healthy and safe environment that will ensure their physical and mental health or well-being, including adequate water supply, sanitation and waste disposal, as well as protection from all forms of environmental danger, such as pollution, ecological degradation or infection.

Participation in decision-making
Every citizen has the right to participate in the development of health policies, whereas everyone has the right to participate in decision-making on matters affecting one’s own health.

Access to health care
Everyone has the right to access to health care services that include:

  • receiving timely emergency care at any health care facility that is open, regardless of one’s ability to pay;
  • treatment and rehabilitation that must be made known to the patient to enable the patient to understand such treatment or rehabilitation and the consequences thereof;
  • provision for special needs in the case of newborn infants, children, pregnant women, the aged, disabled persons, patients in pain, persons living with HIV or AIDS patients;
  • counselling without discrimination, coercion or violence on matters such as reproductive health, cancer or HIV/AIDS;
  • palliative care that is affordable and effective in cases of incurable or terminal illness;
  • a positive disposition displayed by health care providers that demonstrates courtesy, human dignity, patience, empathy and tolerance;
  • health information that includes information on the availability of health services and how best to use such services, and such information shall be in the language understood by the patient.

Knowledge of one’s health insurance/ medical aid scheme
A member of a health insurance or medical aid scheme is entitled to information about that health insurance or medical aid scheme and to challenge, where necessary, the decision of such health insurance or medical aid scheme relating to the member.

Choice of health services
Everyone has a right to choose a particular health care provider for services or a particular health facility for treatment, provided that such choice shall not be contrary to the ethical standards applicable to such health care provider or facility.

Treated by a named health care provider
Everyone has a right to know the person that is providing health care and, therefore, must be attended to by only clearly identified health care providers.

Confidentiality and privacy
Information concerning one’s health, including information concerning treatment may only be disclosed with informed consent, except when required in terms of any law or any order of court

Informed consent
Everyone has a right to be given full and accurate information about the nature of one’s illnesses, diagnostic procedures, the proposed treatment and risks associated therewith and the costs involved.

Refusal of treatment
A person may refuse treatment and such refusal shall be verbal or in writing, provided that such refusal does not endanger the health of others.

A second opinion
Everyone has the right on request to be referred for a second opinion to a health provider of one’s choice

Continuity of care
No one shall be abandoned by a health care professional who or a health facility which initially took responsibility for one’s health without appropriate referral or hand-over.

Complaints about health services
Everyone has the right to complain about health care services, to have such complaints investigated and to receive a full response on such investigation

(Source: Health Professions Council of South Africa, Guidelines for Good Practice in the Health Care Professions, National Patients’ Rights Charter, Booklet 3, published May 2008.)

Batho Pele Principles

Revised Version 2017
Batho Pele (Sotho: “People First”) is a South African political initiative. The initiative was first introduced by the Mandela Administration on October 1, 1997 to stand for the better delivery of goods and services to the public.
Zuid Afrikaans Hospital supports the Batho Pele principles. They are as follows:

Citizens will be consulted about the level and quality of public services they receive and wherever possible, will be given a choice about services that are offered.

Service Standards
While we should continually try to improve the service we give, it’s also about how well we promise to deliver our service at any time. If we already know what is important to our customers, then we can set service standards which must be realistic depending on the resources we have. We should also be able to measure these standards so that everyone can see if they are being met.

All citizens without reservations will have equal access to all services rendered.

Citizens will be treated with courtesy and consideration

Citizens have a right to full, accurate information of services we render

Dealing with complaints/Redress
We respect the right of citizens to complain if our services are poor or unsatisfactory

Openness and Transparency
We do recognise that openness and transparency are the cornerstone of our democracy

Best Value/VFM
We shall endeavour to use public resources efficiently, effectively and economically

Encouraging innovation and Rewarding Excellence
All citizens without reservations will have equal access to all services rendered.

Leadership and Strategic Direction
Managers will lead by example and will endeavour to ensure that the vision, mission and goals are articulated and embraced by all

Service Delivery Impact
We shall endeavour to assess the impact of our services annually and ascertain whether we are achieving our specified objectives

Responsibilities of the patient

Every patient has the following responsibilities:

  • To take care of his or her own health.
  • To care for and protect the environment.
  • To respect the rights of other patients and health care providers.
  • To utilise the health care system properly and not to abuse it.
  • To know his or her local health services and what they offer.
  • To provide health care providers with relevant and accurate information for diagnostic, treatment, rehabilitation or counselling purposes.
  • To advise health care providers of his or her wishes with regard to his or her death.
  • To comply with the prescribed treatment or rehabilitation procedures.
  • To enquire about the related costs of treatment and/or rehabilitation and to arrange for payment.
  • To take care of the health records in his or her possession.