As an American you have rights that don’t necessarily exist in other countries. Patient rights are are included in the rights spelled out in our Constitution and Bill of Rights. But you may not know that you have patient rights too.
Some Patients Don’t Realize that Hospitalized Patients have Rights
The question of patient rights came up recently when Phyllis, a 74-year-old woman who lives in the greater Los Angeles area, complained to us about treatment she received during her hospital stay a year earlier. Phyllis started as one of our Home Health patients following a surgical procedure and hospital stay, and currently is using our dedicated in-home caregiving staff.
Talking about the issues she had with some of the nurses and doctors during her hospitalization, Phyllis said “It’s just not right. I should have the right to…”
“But you do,” I told her. “If you look at the paperwork the hospital gave you, there should be a sheet with your rights as a patient. You still have to advocate for those rights, but they are in place.”
I realized that Phyllis wasn’t the only person who didn’t understand that just because you were a patient didn’t mean your rights were null and void. When we are ill, we feel vulnerable and sometimes don’t ask for things or question the actions of our care staff.
Federal Laws Governing Patient Rights
There are federal laws governing patient rights as well as state-imposed regulations. Here are just a few extracted from a list of 23 Patient Rights created by the California Hospital Association. You have a right to:
- Case discussion, consultation, examination and treatment are confidential and should be conducted discreetly. You have the right to be told the reason for the presence of any individual.
- Ask visitors to leave your room prior to a physical examination and when treatment issues are discussed. You should ask that privacy curtains be used in semi-private rooms.
- Staff should be keeping confidential all communications and records related to your care and stay in the hospital.
- Receive care in a safe setting, free from mental, physical, sexual or verbal abuse and neglect, exploitation or harassment.
- You should expect reasonable responses to any sound requests made for service.
Luxe Homecare and Patient Rights
To find out how we protect your rights, contact us at (310) 362-4882, email info@LuxeHC.com or or visit, www.LuxeHomeCare.com. We provide caregiving and home health services to individuals living in the greater Southern California area including Brentwood, Bel Air, Beverly Hills, Long Beach, Malibu, Newport Beach, Pacific Palisades, Riverside and Santa Monica.