The legal impact of artificial intelligence on the New Zealand health system.

Type of content
Theses / Dissertations
Publisher's DOI/URI
Thesis discipline
Degree name
Doctor of Philosophy
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Boniface, Christopher Ryan

This thesis provides an analysis of the legal impact that artificial intelligence (AI) technologies may have on New Zealand’s healthcare system. The focus is on whether the established rights and protections afforded to patient’s can be readily applied or interpreted in situations involving an artificial intelligence system. Using the Code of Patient’s Rights1 as a framework for the rights afforded and the underlying ideals contained, this thesis engages with both the codified rights as well as their common law applications. Doing so provides a robust and comprehensive analysis of what features of an AI and which current formulations within the law are incompatible or at least require new interpretations to interact.

The thesis begins with an overview of the background to both the healthcare landscape and the technology of AI in general. And then follows this with an overview of the rights afforded to patient’s within New Zealand, and the ideals which can be inferred from this which will be used as the foundation for the thesis’ substantive analysis. The thesis then engages with four of the rights outlined – discrimination, privacy, informed consent, and negligence – chosen to provide the most widely applicable discussion, as well as those which are considered the most integral to a patient’s care. Included in the substantive analysis of negligence is a discussion of the Accident Compensation Act 2001 and the role it may play in mitigating some of the commonly lamented issues with AI technology. The thesis then ends with a discussion of prospective reforms that may assist with the interaction with AI and any associated issues with them, and then a set of recommendations into how New Zealand should proceed in the coming years.

Ngā upoko tukutuku/Māori subject headings
ANZSRC fields of research
All Rights Reserved