Self-Advocacy Resources

This page provides key resources and links to websites to help you navigate your way around the health system, and provide feedback to our health services.

It’s always OK to ask!

How to prepare yourself for an appointment or hospital admission:

  1. Make sure you know Your Healthcare Rights
  2. Support yourself to give informed consent – check this web page or listen to this podcast
  3. What should you ask? Question Builder tool – prepare for an appointment
  4. What should you ask? Five Questions to ask your doctor before you get any test or treatment (available here in 10 languages)
  5. Check out Lab Tests Online to find out about pathology tests – what they mean, what to expect, should you have the test? The Health Consumers Council is working with Lab Tests Online and Curtin University to improve the health literacy landscape and help health consumers better understand their pathology results.  More information about the project can be found here.  If you would like to review the online platform and undertake a survey of your experience, you can do that here.
  6. You can download a one page Procedure Specific Information Sheet – if there is one for your procedure – make sure you ask your doctor for the full, four page version when you have your appointment
  7. Stay safe in hospital and receiving healthcare Top Tips to Safe Healthcare (available in 15 languages)
  8. Stay safe before, during and after a hospital admission – see the suite of Patient First materials – See also the Easy English version of Going to Hospital developed for English Language students
  9. Stay safe with your medications – see My Medicines and Me questionnaire for mental health medications
  10. Do you need Private Health Insurance? You can access unbiased free information about private health insurance at This site is provided by the Australian Government. You can learn about health insurance, see frequently asked questions, and compare policies side by side based on your individual or family circumstances.

Guardianship and Administration

How to give feedback

As well as seeking advocacy assistance you may want to provide feedback when service has been poor, insensitive or incompetent. This can be a powerful way of improving the health system for yourself and others.

We have a simple step by step information sheet for how to make a complaint

You may also find these resources useful:

  1. Click here to download a Sample Complaint letter
  2. Click here to download a Freedom of Information Request Letter (Template)
  3. Click here for the Freedom of Information Contact List

Open Disclosure

When something has gone seriously wrong in hospital, you can expect to have an open and honest conversation. See here for more information.

Care Opinion

The Care Opinion website allows you to post your story, positive or negative, anonymously. The health service is identified but you can remain anonymous. This story is published to the website and you, and everyone else, can track its progress from your story being read, responded to, and a change made if necessary. The feedback is read by the highest level of health service management, so it is one of the most effective ways to make your voice count. If you need any assistance in posting your story, you can contact Care Opinion by phone on 1300 662 996