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Do care, compassion & charity still have a place in health?

28 September 2015
Media release

Do care, compassion and charity still have a place in health care?

Members of the public are often reminded by politicians and policy makers overseeing the funding and delivery of health care, says Professor Ron Paterson, of increasing healthcare complexity, cost pressures, the burden of chronic disease and the need for patients to assume greater responsibility for their own care.

“Systems thinking, integration, innovation and patient experience are buzz words in the contemporary health system,” says Professor Ron Paterson who will be lecturing at the Ron Ball memorial lecture this Thursday (1 October 2015) at St Andrew’s College.

“What does all this mean for patients and the community? What is the relevance of care, and of the legal concept of a duty of care?”

As Health and Disability Commissioner in 2009 Professor Paterson rejected calls for a “right to compassion” to be added to the Code of Patients’ Rights.

Yet Health and Disability Commission reports continue to highlight cases where patients and families have been treated without compassion, and some health professionals report burn-out and compassion fatigue.

“Charity is sometimes considered an outdated concept, particularly within a publicly funded system. Does charity still have a place in health care in New Zealand in 2015?” asks Professor Paterson. His lecture on Thursday night is the first of a series of Ron Ball Memorial Lectures.

“Mr Ball was a huge supporter of the charity hospital from the very beginning and we are delighted to host this lecture as recognition of his role,” says Philip Bagshaw, chairman of the Canterbury Charity Hospital Trust.

“Professor Paterson’s lecture provides everyone connected with health care in any way to reflect on care, compassion and charity in the health system. Everyone is welcome and the lecture is free,” says Mr Bagshaw.

Professor Ron Paterson is a Parliamentary Ombudsman and former Health and Disability Commissioner.

Ron Ball Memorial Lecture
Care, compassion and charity: Do they still have a place in health care?
Professor Ron Paterson
7.30pm, Thursday 1 October, St Andrew’s College Theatre

Everyone welcome. Free entry.

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