Patient Rights

Our first priority is to provide you the care you need, when you need it, with skill, compassion, and respect. Please tell us if you have concerns about your care or if you have pain.

Patient Rights and Responsibilities  for Adult Patients

As an adult patient, you have the right to:

High quality hospital care

  • Considerate and respectful care in a safe setting.
  • Quality care given by competent personnel and high professional standards that are continually maintained and reviewed.
  • Treatment without discrimination based on age, ethnicity, race, color, religion, culture, language, national origin, sex, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, physical or mental disability, socioeconomic status, or source of payment.
  • Know the name of the doctor responsible for coordinating your care and the names and roles of people involved in your care.
  • Be told who to contact to report a complaint or grievance, and expect a prompt response or resolution.
  • Have a family member and your doctor notified of your admission, if you wish.
  • Decide who your designated medical representative is.
  • Be informed (or have your representative informed) about the outcome of your care, including unanticipated outcomes.
  • Emergency procedures started without unnecessary delay.
  • Be free from repeated medical procedures unless they are medically necessary.
  • Medical and nursing treatment that avoids unnecessary physical and mental discomfort.
  • Comfort and also information about managing pain. You can access staff who are committed to pain relief.
  • Exercise your rights without being subject to discrimination, punishment or reprisal.
  • Communication and information you can understand. Information will be appropriate to your age, understanding, and language. If you have vision, speech, hearing, and/or other impairments, you will receive help (if needed) to ensure your care needs are met.
  • Interpreter services for sign language and foreign language as needed at no cost.

A clean and safe environment

  • Freedom from abuse or harassment.
  • Know what rules and regulations of the organization apply to your behavior as a patient.
  • Obtain information about any professional relationships among individuals who are treating you.
  • To be woken up only if necessary for medical care.
  • Be restrained or put in seclusion only if necessary for your safety or the safety of others.
  • Ask to move to a different room if another patient or visitors in the room are unreasonably disturbing you.

Involvement in your care

  • Participate in your plan of care.
  • Receive from your doctor all information necessary to give informed consent before the start of any procedure and/or treatment, except in emergencies. The information includes the specific procedure or treatment, the medically significant risks involved and the probable amount of time to recover. Your doctor should also tell you about significant medical alternatives or other ways to treat your medical condition. If you are unable to receive or understand this information, your doctor can also tell your designated representative.
  • Get complete and current information from your doctor about your medical condition, diagnosis, treatment and prognosis (expected outcome). If it is not medically advisable to give the information to you, the information will be available to the person you choose or appoint.
  • Refuse any drug, treatment or procedure to the extent permitted by law and be informed of the medical consequences of your action.
  • Decide who your family members are and how you would like them to be involved in your care. These can be people who are related to you by genetic, legal or emotional relationships.
  • Decide which people should have the same visitation rights as immediate family (even if they are not related to you).
  • Have your family or support person with you unless that person’s presence is not appropriate for therapeutic or medical reasons, or violates privacy or safety.
  • Be informed about potential participation in a research study or in an organ or tissue donor program. You have the right to refuse participation in such programs and may withdraw from them at any time.
  • Consult with another doctor at your own request and expense. Medical or nursing staff will help arrange a consultation if requested.
  • Receive spiritual and emotional support and care by a religious official. Your religious practices will be supported as much as possible.
  • Make advance directives to guide your healthcare if you become unable to speak for yourself. The staff will follow your valid advance directives.
  • Ask for help with ethical issues and difficult decisions regarding your care.
  • Access all information in your medical record. When it is not medically advisable to give  the information to you, the information will be available to an appropriate person on your behalf within a reasonable time frame.

Protection of your privacy

  • Confidentiality in all communications and records about your care.
  • Privacy about your medical care program. Case discussions, consultations, examinations and treatments are confidential and should be as private as possible.
  • Personal privacy during medical or nursing treatments, and during activities like dressing, bathing and using the bathroom. People who are not directly involved in your care must have your permission to be present.
  • Personal privacy and privacy about your healthcare information following HIPAA regulations (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) and hospital policies related to privacy.
  • Request a list of certain disclosures of your personal health information.
  • Request an amendment to clinical, billing or other records containing personal health information.

Help when leaving the hospital

  • Expect reasonable continuity of care. You have the right to know about your continuing healthcare needs after discharge and how to meet them.
  • A complete explanation of the reasons for a transfer to another facility and the alternatives to that transfer. The facility you are going to must accept you before you are transferred.

Help with your bill and filing insurance claims

  • See your bill and receive an explanation of charges regardless of who is paying the bill.
  • Information about financial resources that may help you pay for your care.

Behavioral Health patients may have additional rights per North Carolina statutes.

As an adult patient, you are responsible for:

  • Providing, to the best of your knowledge, accurate and complete information about your current health condition, past illnesses, hospitalizations, medicines and other matters about your health.
  • Telling your caregiver if you think you will have problems following the prescribed treatment.
  • Speaking up and asking questions if you do not understand your treatment plan and  what you need to do.
  • Following the treatment plan recommended by the doctor who is responsible for your care.
  • Making informed decisions about your care.
  • Making sure that we have a copy of your written advance directive if you have one.
  • Asking about pain management, including what to expect and options for pain relief. You should let us know if your pain continues. You should take an active part in your pain management plan and ask for relief when you first feel pain.
  • Making reasonable efforts to cooperate with other patients, the needs of the medical center, medical staff and employees.
  • Providing necessary information for insurance claims and working with us to make payment arrangements as promptly as possible.
  • Recognizing that your lifestyle and behaviors affect your health.
  • Keeping appointments that are arranged for your continuing care.
  • Accepting responsibility for the medical results if you refuse treatment and do not follow your health providers’ instructions.
  • Behaving in a way that respects the rights of other patients, staff members and medical center property.

Patient Right and Responsibilities for Pediatric Patients

You and your family have a right to:

Respect and personal dignity

  • You are important. We want to get to know you better.
  • We will tell you who we are, and we will call you by your name.
  • We will take time to listen to you.
  • We will honor your privacy.

Care that supports you and your family

  • You and your family are important. We will work together to make you feel as safe and comfortable as possible.
  • All families are different. We want to learn about what is important to you and your family.
  • You, your family and caregivers will plan how the important people in your life can visit you.

Information you can understand

  • We will explain things to you. We will speak in ways that you can understand. You can ask about what is happening to you and why.
  • Someone who speaks your language will help explain things to you.
  • Someone from your family can be with you when people in the hospital are explaining things to you.

Quality healthcare

  • You will be taken care of by doctors, nurses and other people who know how to take care of children and teenagers.
  • You have the right to know all of the people who take care of you in the hospital. You and your family can meet with them to plan what is best for you.
  • We will work together with you and your family to make your stay as short and comfortable as possible.

Emotional support

  • When you are in the hospital, you might feel scared, mad, lonely or sad. You can let people know how you feel. It is okay to cry or complain.
  • You can have your family with you as much as possible. When this is not possible, the other people caring for you will explain why.
  • We can help you meet other children and families who have had similar experiences to yours.
  • You can wear your own clothing most of the time and keep your special things with you.
  • You can talk or play with people who know how to help when you have questions or problems.
  • You can ask to be moved to another room if you are uncomfortable or unhappy, and we can try to make this happen if we can.

Care that respects your need to grow, play and learn

  • We will consider all your interests and needs, not just those related to your illness or hospitalization.
  • You have the right to rest, to play and to learn. We will make sure that you have places and times for the things children your age need to grow and learn.

Make choices and decisions

  • Your ideas and feelings about how you want to be cared for are important.
  • You can tell us how we can help you feel more comfortable.
  • You can tell us how you want to take part in your care.
  • You can make choices whenever possible.

You and your family have the responsibility to:

Provide information

  • You have important information about your child’s health. We need to know about symptoms, treatment, medicines and other illness.
  • You should tell us what you want for your child.
  • It is important for you to tell us how you want to take part in your child’s care.
  • You should tell us if you don’t understand something about your child’s care.
  • If you are not satisfied with your child’s care, please tell us.

Provide appropriate care

  • You and the other members of the healthcare team work together to plan your child’s care.
  • You are responsible for doing the things you agreed to do in this plan of care. If you cannot follow the plan, please tell us.

Meet financial obligations

  • You are responsible for your child’s hospital bill.
  • You must provide necessary information for insurance claims and work with us to make payment arrangements as promptly as possible.
  • Notify us if you need financial counseling.

Respect and consider the rights of others

  • Respect their privacy.
  • Keep noise levels low, including voices, TV, radio, and video games.
  • Do not smoke on the hospital campus.
  • Do not bring or use adult entertainment items, such as R-rated movies, adult magazines, or adult websites.