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Patients' Rights & Responsibilities

Deaconess recognizes that patients have rights and responsibilities to participate in decisions related to their health. These rights and responsibilities also apply to their legally designated representative (surrogate), patient-designated representative (support person), and/or the parents/guardians of minors.

You have the right to expect that (within limits imposed on us by law) we will:

  • Provide safe, high-quality medical care within the hospital’s capability and mission and without regard to race, creed, religion, ability or disability, age, gender, ethnic or national origin, lifestyle or ability to pay.
  • Provide care that shows support of your rights and respect for you and your cultural, psychosocial, spiritual and personal values, beliefs and preferences.
  • Ensure that you are cared for by competent staff whose identity and status and relationship to the hospital are made known to you and that you are given reasons for proposed changes in professional staff providing your care.
  • Respect your privacy and confidentiality of your records and provide a Notice of our Privacy Practices.
  • Provide native language interpretation if needed.
  • Provide assistance for vision, speech, hearing, language and/or cognitive impairments.
  • Provide prompt notification of your admission to your family, personal doctor or others designated by you.
  • Ensure that you can receive visitors, mail and telephone calls unless you are informed of sound medical or institutional reasons for limited access.
  • Receive and honor your advance directive or provide information on preparing an advance directive if you do not have one.
  • Honor your wishes regarding organ donation.
  • Seek an appropriate surrogate decision-maker if you lack decision-making ability and have no advance directive.
  • Inform you of your illness, treatment options, potential benefits, risks, likelihood of achieving desired outcomes, alternatives and costs.
  • Inform you if a proposed treatment involves a research or experimental protocol.
  • Inform you of the expected and actual outcomes of your treatment, including unanticipated outcomes.
  • Involve you in the development and implementation of your plan of care and in the resolution of any dilemmas involving your care.
  • Honor your decision to accept or reject proposed care and to provide an explanation of the medical consequences of a refusal.
  • Ensure that your refusal to accept a proposed plan of care will not prevent you from receiving other appropriate services.
  • Involve family or others as designated by you, your support person or your surrogate to participate in your care.
  • Provide treatment without regard to any business or financial considerations or incentives that may be involved.
  • Obtain your consent prior to recording or filming any aspect of your care, whether for internal or external purposes; honor your request to cease recording or filming; accept your revocation of consent for use up to a reasonable period before the film or recording is used.
  • Provide continuous, coordinated and appropriate care during and after any hospitalization and advise you of your options if we are unable to meet your needs.
  • Promote your comfort, educate you about pain and assess and appropriately manage your pain.
  • Protect you to the best of our ability from real or perceived abuse, neglect or exploitation from staff, students, volunteers, other patients, visitors or family members.
  • Provide for your safety and the security of your property.
  • Provide access to protective and advocacy services.
  • Provide access to pastoral care and spiritual services.
  • Avoid the use of seclusion or restraint unless necessary for your safety or the safety of others and as ordered by your doctor.
  • Provide access to or a copy of your records upon written request.
  • Work with you to resolve ethical issues concerning your care.
  • Ensure that your complaints and recommendations are received without coercion, discrimination, reprisal or unreasonable interruption of care.
  • Provide a prompt and courteous response to your complaints.
  • Provide information regarding the charges for your care and an explanation of your bill and available payment methods and the hospital’s reimbursement sources.

As a patient or representative you are expected to:

  • Provide accurate and complete personal and health information needed to provide appropriate care.
  • Provide your advance directive if you want it to apply.
  • Participate in making decisions about your health care and ask questions of your doctor or other care giver about your diagnosis or treatment and management of pain.
  • Follow your doctor’s orders, continue recommended treatment, notify your doctor of any change in your condition, and accept outcomes if you choose to not follow the recommended plan of care.
  • Tell your doctor or other care giver if you want to transfer to another care provider or facility.
  • Be considerate of others receiving and providing care and their property.
  • Follow hospital policies on no smoking and prohibition of weapons on the premises.
  • Provide complete and accurate information for insurance claims and work with billing offices for paying your bills on time.

You or your representative may contact the following to discuss concerns about your care or an ethical issue or to file a grievance:

  • Patient Relations at Main Campus 812-450-3430 or 1-800-651-9542
  • Patient Relations at Gateway 812-842-3967 or 1-800-313-4294
  • 24-Hour Patient Assistance Line 812-450-7827 or TTY 812-450-4900
  • Indiana State Department of Health, 2 N. Meridian St., Indianapolis, IN 46204-7373, 317-233-1325 or TTY 317-233-5577
  • Medicare Beneficiaries— Health care Excel, Medicare QIO for Indiana 1-800-288-1499