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Patients' Rights & Responsibilities


Access to Care
Individuals shall be accorded impartial access to care without regard to race, religion, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, ethnicity, age, handicap or sources of payment for care. If a surrogate (parent, legal guardian, health care representative) is designated to exercise patient’s rights when the patient is incapable of doing so, the patient’s rights will be exercised without coercion, discrimination or retaliation. The patient has the right to considerate, respectful care at all times and with respect for personal privacy in an environment that preserves dignity. 
Plan of Care—The patient has the right to:
  • Participate in the development, implementation and revision of his/her inpatient, outpatient, discharge and pain management plan of care, including the right to request or refuse treatment. Make informed decisions regarding his/her care, and be informed of his/her health status. Know who is responsible for authorizing and performing procedure or treatment. Expect that his/her advance directives regarding end-of-life decisions will be honored. 
  • Be treated with discretion and sensitivity regarding values and beliefs of self and family surrounding tissue/organ donation.
  • Have his/her pain treated as effectively as possible, which includes appropriate assessment and management of pain in a timely response to reports of pain. 
  • Be provided adequate information that will enable the patient to consent to or decline participation in clinical research. Sign an informed consent if the hospital proposes to engage in or perform human experimentation or other research project affecting his/her care or treatment. 
  • Have prompt notification of admission to the hospital made to family, personal doctor or others so designated.
  • Receive itemized cost information of proposed or received services within a reasonable period of time. Be informed of the source of the hospital’s reimbursement and any limitations which may be placed upon his/her care. 
Identity of Care Givers and Continuity of Care—The patient has the right to:
  • Know the name and professional status of any person providing his/her care/services and his/her relationship to the hospital. 
  • Know which physician or other practitioner is primarily responsible for his/her care. Know the reasons for any proposed change in the professional staff responsible for his/her care.
  • Know the relationships of the hospital to other persons or organizations participating in his/her care.
  • Know reasons for transfer either within or outside the hospital.
Privacy and Confidentiality—The patient has the right, within the law, to: 
  • Personal privacy and to refuse to talk with or see anyone not officially connected with the hospital or his/her care, or persons officially connected with the hospital but not directly involved in his/her care. 
  • Be interviewed or examined in surroundings designed to ensure reasonable visual and auditory privacy and modesty. 
  • Expect all communications and care records, including source of payment for treatment, to be treated as confidential.
  • Request a transfer to another room if another patient or visitor is unreasonably disturbing. 
  • Review his/her medical records subject to applicable federal or state laws.

Personal Safety and Comfort—The patient has the right to:
  • Receive care in a safe setting and to expect reasonable safety insofar as hospital practices and environment are concerned.
  • Be free from all forms of abuse or harassment.
  • Be free from restraint or seclusion of any form. (Restraint or seclusion may be imposed only to ensure immediate physical safety of the patient, a staff member or others and must be discontinued at the earliest time possible.)
  • Be placed in protective privacy when considered necessary for personal safety.
Communication and Visitation—The patient has the right to:
  • Be informed (or have support person informed, where appropriate) of his/her visitation rights, including any clinical restriction or limitation on such rights.
  • Be informed (or have support person informed, where appropriate) of the right, subject to his/her consent to receive visitors he/she designates, including, but not limited to, a spouse, a domestic partner (including a same sex domestic partner), another family member, or a friend, and his or her right to withdraw or deny such consent at any time. 
  • Have no restrictions, limitations or otherwise denials of visitation privileges on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation or disability. 
  • Be assured that all visitors enjoy full and equal visitation privileges consistent with patient preferences. 
  • Receive a prompt and courteous response to complaints.


A patient or his/her representative are expected to:
  • Provide accurate and complete personal and health information needed to provide appropriate care. Provide an advance directive if he/she wants it to apply.
  • Participate in making health care decisions and ask questions of a doctor or other care giver about diagnosis or treatment and management of pain. Follow the doctor’s orders, continue recommended treatment, notify the doctor of changes in condition, and accept outcomes if he/she chooses to not follow the recommended plan of care.
  • Tell the doctor or other care giver if he/she wants to transfer to another care provider or facility.
  • Be considerate of those receiving and providing care and their property.
  • Provide complete and accurate information for insurance claims and work with billing offices for paying bills on time.


  • Patient Relations at Deaconess Hospital (Main Campus)
    812-450-3430 or 1-800-651-9542
  • Patient Relations at Deaconess Gateway Medical Campus
    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 – Healthcare Excel, Medicare QIO for Indiana 1-800-288-1499