Principles guiding provision of health and disability services

The principles in this section recognise the particular needs of children and young people receiving health and disability support services. The principles describe what should be provided when your child or young person receives those services. They are based on expert opinion and a considerable body of literature in New Zealand and overseas and they have been developed after wide consultation.

Doctor examining young boy with a stethoscope

© Edward J Bock 111 | Dreamstime.com - Pediatrician examining boy

Check this set of principles which describe what should be provided when your child or young person receives health and disability support services.

When children and young people receive health or disability services, their needs should be the primary concern of the health provider.

Children and young people should be treated as thinking, feeling people who are members of a family and who have a range of strengths and needs.

Children are part of a family and are dependent on parents or primary caregivers for physical and emotional care and support. Families are a critical part of support and care for children.

Health and disability service providers should respect and be responsive to Māori and their cultural values and beliefs.

Health care and disability support services should provide culturally safe services to all children, young people and their families.

As much health care and disability support as possible should be provided in the home and community. When children and young people are admitted to hospital, this should be as close to home as possible within the bounds of quality and safety.

Children and young people of all ages should have information provided in a manner appropriate to their maturity, understanding and culture, including participation in decisions that affect them, active involvement in their care and giving consent if competent.

Families need to be fully informed about their child's or young person’s condition so that they can participate in all aspects of their child or young person’s care and support.

Children and young people should be protected from physical and emotional pain, trauma and distress.

Accommodation, facilities and equipment should meet the needs of children and young people. Facilities and equipment should be designed, provided and maintained to ensure children and young people’s safety and emotional wellbeing. Accommodation for children and young people should be separate from that provided for adults.

Health and disability service providers whose knowledge and skills enable them to respond appropriately to children and young people’s clinical, emotional, developmental, educational and cultural needs, should care for children, young people and their families.

Every child and young person receiving health care or disability support services should have access to, and opportunities to participate in play, recreation, creative activities and education.

Health care and disability support providers should have systems to provide continuity and coordination between and within the various services working with children, young people and their families.

Health care and disability support providers of Well Child, chronic care or disability support services for children and young people should ensure that long-term support systems are created which are centred on the individual.