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Patient Rights and Responsibilities

All employees of Genesys Health System (GHS) have an ethical and professional responsibility to respect our patients at all times.

GHS has the responsibility to give the patient adequate and appropriate care, to respect patient rights, and recognize patient responsibilities.

GHS will inform each patient, or when appropriate, the patient’s representative, of the patient’s rights, in advance of furnishing or discontinuing patient care when possible. It is the policy of GHS that each patient will receive notice of the Patient Rights & Responsibilities. This will be accomplished by:
  • Patients admitted to GHS shall receive in writing a copy of their Rights & Responsibilities. This is included in the Patient Guide (Admission Booklet).
  • Patients will receive a copy of the Patient Rights & Responsibilities at the time of registration for inpatient and outpatient visits.
  • Patient Rights & Responsibilities posters are displayed at public access points throughout GHS.
  • Patient Rights & Responsibilities are available to the public on the Genesys internet webpage.
In keeping with the philosophy of Ascension Health System, we believe that every patient enjoys specific rights and has certain responsibilities. In order to meet our goal of quality patient care, GHS must work together with the patient to facilitate the best patient care possible.

We believe that a patient who understands and participates in his or her health care may achieve better results. GHS has the responsibility to give the patient adequate and appropriate care, to respect patient rights, and recognize the responsibilities of the patient. We have prepared these rights and responsibilities for the benefit of our patients. In care of a minor or patient with a guardian, the following rights and responsibilities are also afforded to the patient's parent and/or guardian. In circumstances when the patient is unable to make decisions about his or her care, treatment, and services, the hospital will involve the surrogate decision-maker. GHS will honor and respect Patient Rights & Responsibilities.

Patient Rights

GHS will:
    • Respect, protect, and promote patient rights.
    • Inform the patient of his or her rights.
    • Provide care in a safe setting.
    • Treat the patient in a dignified and respectful manner that supports his or her dignity.
    • Respect the patient's right to, and need for effective communication in a manner that he or she understands and tailored to the patient's age, language, and ability to understand that meets the patient's needs.
    • Respect the patient's cultural and personal values, beliefs, and preferences.
    • Respect and accommodate the patient's right to religious and other spiritual services.
    • Allow the patient to access, request amendment to, and obtain information on disclosures of his or her health information, in accordance with law and regulation.
    • Inform the patient of his or her visitation rights. This includes the right to have visitors designated by the patient, including, but not limited to a spouse, a domestic partner (including same-sex), another family member, or a friend. This also includes the right to withdraw or deny such consent at any time. See the Visitor Management Policy for additional detail.
    • Allow a family member, friend, or other individual to be present with the patient for emotional support during the course of stay, unless it infringes on other's rights, safety, and medical treatment.
    • Prohibit discrimination based on age, race, ethnicity, religion, culture, language, physical or mental disability, socioeconomic status, sex, sexual orientation, and gender identity or expression.
    • Provide information in a manner that meets the patient’s needs if the patient has vision, speech, hearing, or cognitive impairments.
    • Respect the patient's right to participate in decisions about his or her care, treatment and services, including the right to have his or her own physician promptly notified of his or her admission to the hospital.
    • Respect the patient’s right to refuse care, treatment, and services, in accordance with the law.
    • Honor the patient's right to give or withhold informed consent. This includes informed consent to produce or use recordings, films, or other images of the patient for purposes other than his or her care.
    • Protect the patient and respect his or her rights during research, investigation, and clinical trials.
    • Inform and provide information to the patient about the individual's responsible for, as well as those providing, his or her care, treatment, and services. This includes informing the patient of the name of the physician, clinical psychologist, or other practitioner who has primary responsibility for the patient’s care. Because this is a teaching hospital, some care may be provided by residents, interns or other students under the direction and close supervision of a physician or other health professional.
    • Address and respect patient decisions about care, treatment, and services received at the end of life.
    • Honor the patient's right to formulate or review and revise the patient’s advance directive.
    • Respect patient privacy.
    • Respect the patient’s right to pain management.
    • Ensure the patient is free from neglect, exploitation, and verbal, mental, physical, and sexual abuse.
    • Promote and create an environment that preserves dignity and contributes to a positive self-image.
    • Provide access to protective and advocacy services.
    • Protect the patient from physical or mental abuse, and corporal punishment. This includes the right to be free from restraint or seclusion, of any form, imposed as a means of coercion, discipline, convenience, or retaliation. In addition, restraint or seclusion may only be imposed to ensure the immediate physical safety of the patient, a staff member, or others and must be discontinued at the earliest possible time. This is addressed in detail in the GHS Restraint Policies.
    • Review patient complaints and grievances.

Patient Responsibilities

The patient has the following responsibilities:
    • Medical History. To provide honest and complete information about his/her current condition and about past medical conditions and treatments.
    • Lack of Understanding. To make it known if he/she does not understand the description of his/her condition or the description of the course of treatment proposed for his/her condition.
    • Refusal of Treatment. To refuse treatment, but if the patient refuses treatment, the patient is responsible for the results of the decision.
    • Following Instructions. To follow the treatment plan recommended by the patient’s health care team, including physicians, nurses and therapists. This responsibility also includes keeping appointments and giving notice when unable to do so.
    • Charges for Treatment. Regardless of the type of insurance plan the patient is responsible for paying for, or for ensuring payment for, the medical treatment rendered at Genesys.
    • Respect for others and for property. To be considerate of the rights of other patients and for Genesys personnel. This responsibility particularly recognizes that other patients may be harmed by noisy conversation or behavior. The patient is responsible for being respectful of Genesys property.
    • Rule and Regulations. To follow rules and regulations of Genesys regarding patient care and conduct. The patient and family need to communicate with the caregiver if they intend to leave the nursing unit.
    • Reporting Pain. The patient is responsible for telling Genesys about his/her pain; this includes:
      • Asking his/her health care provider (doctor, nurse, or clinician) what to expect regarding pain and pain management;
        • Discussing pain relief options with his/her nurse;
        • Asking for pain relief when pain first begins;
        • Helping his/her health care provider measure pain;
        • Telling his/her health care provider about any pain that will not go away; and
        • Discussing any worries or fears he/she has about taking pain medication.
Patient Complaints & Grievances
A patient has the right to file a complaint or grievance if he or she feels that his or her rights have been violated. The patient will not be subject to coercion, discrimination, reprisal, or unreasonable interruption of care. Patient complaints and grievances will be reviewed by GHS. The process for filing a complaint or grievance is detailed in the Patient Complaints & Grievance Policy.

* This document meets all The Joint Commission, and CMS requirements.
Regulation Number, Link, or Document:
The Joint Commission (TJC). Chapter 1, Ethics Rights and Responsibility
Center for Medicaid/Medicare Services (CMS), CoP 482.13
Contact Approval and Modification Process:
Committee Approvals: GRMC Board of Trustees (4/4/12)


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