English and French are the official languages of New Brunswick. You therefore have the right to receive health care services in either of these languages.
Examples of public bodies that must serve you in the official language of your choice:
- Ambulance New Brunswick
- Department of Health
- Extra-Mural Program
- Horizon and Vitalité Health Networks
- Mental health centres
- New Brunswick Heart Centre
- Public Health Services
- Stan Cassidy Rehabilitation Centre
The New Brunswick Official Languages Act does not apply to:
- private health care providers
- private health clinics
- private physicians’ offices.
Throughout New Brunswick, hospital and health services staff must serve you in the official language of your choice.
Your language rights apply to all types of communication.
From the moment of first contact, you must be greeted in both official languages so that you know that services are available in both English and French. Furthermore, your choice of language must be respected throughout the continuum of care.
Health services and programs must be of equal quality in both official languages.
New Brunswick has two Health Networks: Horizon and Vitalité. They manage hospitals and provide health care services. Each Network has an internal working language (English for Horizon and French for Vitalité). However, both networks must provide their services to the public in both official languages.
“Providing quality health services goes beyond the technical acts involved in providing people with care. Quality is, in fact, closely tied to the ability of the workers to assist, advise, guide and educate the service users. The ability to understand and to be understood is therefore a crucial part of an effective relationship between health professionals and users of health services.”
REPORT TO THE FEDERAL MINISTER OF HEALTH
Consultative Committee for French-Speaking Minority Communities
What is the role of the Commissioner of Official Languages?
The Commissioner of Official Languages for New Brunswick is an independent officer of the Legislative Assembly. The Commissioner’s role is to protect the language rights of members of the Anglophone and Francophone communities and to promote the advancement of both official languages.
There may be circumstances when public bodies do not respect your language rights. If that is the case, we invite you to contact us. Filing a complaint is easy, and the investigations we conduct help improve the quality of bilingual services. To learn more, simply click on this link.
How to contact us
Office of the Commissioner of Official Languages for New Brunswick
Address: Kings Place, 440 King Street, King Tower, Suite 646 Fredericton, NB E3B 5H8