Lakeland Health Care

Patient Rights

Patients of Lakeland HealthCare shall be treated in accordance with the following principles:

Equal Treatment
A patient or resident will not be denied appropriate care on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, sex, age, handicap, marital status, sexual preference, or source of payment.

A patient or resident is entitled to be free from performing services for the facility that are not included for therapeutic purposes in the plan of care.

A patient or resident is entitled to information about the health facility rules and regulations affecting patient or resident care and conduct.

Service Unavailability
A patient will be informed if they need care or services which Lakeland is unable to provide. Lakeland will provide the patient with alternatives, including transfers to other care providers if medically advisable and necessary.

A patient has the right to expect security and safety while being treated.

Medical Record Access
An individual who is or has been a patient or resident is entitled to inspect, or receive for a reasonable fee, a copy of his or her medical records upon request. A third party shall not be given a copy of the patient's/resident's medical record without prior authorization of the patient or resident.

Medical Record Confidentiality
A patient or resident is entitled to confidential treatment of personal medical records, and may refuse their release to a person outside the facility except as required because of a transfer to another health care facility or as required by law or third party payment contract.

A patient or resident is entitled to privacy, to the extent feasible, in treatment and in caring for personal needs with consideration, respect, and full recognition of his or her dignity and individuality.

Informal Consent
A patient and, when appropriate, his family, has the right to receive an explanation of any proposed treatments or procedures which includes information about:
 • potential benefits and drawbacks
 • potential problems related to recuperation
 • the likelihood of success
 • the possible results of non-treatment; and
 • any significant alternatives.

 Patients shall be informed of:
 • the name of the physician or other practitioner who has primary responsibility for their care.
 • the identity and professional status of individuals responsible for authorizing and performing procedures or treatments;
 • any professional relationship to another health care provider or institution that might suggest a conflict of interest;
 • Lakeland's relationship to educational institutions involved in the patient's care; and
 • any business relationships between individuals treating the patient, or between the organization and any other health care, service, or educational institutions involved in the patient's care.

Treatment Refusal
A patient or resident is entitled to refuse treatment to the extent provided by law and to be informed of the consequences of that refusal. When a refusal of treatment prevents a health facility or its staff from providing appropriate care according to ethical and professional standards, the relationship with the patient or resident may be terminated upon reasonable notice.

A patient or resident is entitled to exercise his or her rights as a patient or resident and as a citizen, and to this end may present grievances or recommend changes in policies and services on behalf of himself or herself or others to the facility staff, to governmental officials, or to another person of his or her choice within or outside the facility, free from restraint, interference, coercion, discrimination, or reprisal. A patient or resident is entitled to information about the facility's policies and procedures for initiation, review, and resolution of patient or resident complaints.

A patient or their family may file a grievance, pursue their rights and/or recommend changes in policies and services. The Citizen's Guide to Filing a Complaint Against a Health Care Facility is available in all Lakeland lobbies.

Experimental Treatment/Participation in Research
A patient or resident is entitled to information concerning an experimental procedure proposed as a part of his or her care and shall have the right to refuse to participate in the experiment without jeopardizing his or her continuing care.

All patients asked to participate in a research project are given the following information:
 • A description of the expected benefits:
 • A description of the potential discomforts and risks
 • A description of the alternative services that might also prove advantageous to them
 • A full explanation of the procedures to be followed, especially those that are experimental in nature
 • That they may refuse to participate and that their refusal will not compromise their access to services

Financial Disclosure
A patient or resident is entitled to examine and receive an explanation of his or her bill and to receive, upon request, information relating to financial assistance available through the facility.

Civil Liberties
Any restrictions on communication shall be fully explained to the patient and family and are determined with their participation. A patient or resident is entitled to associate and have private communications and consultations with his or her physician, attorney, or any other person of his or her choice, and to send and receive personal mail unopened on the same day it is received at the health facility or agency, unless medically contraindicated as documented by the attending physician in the medical record. A patient's or resident's civil and religious liberties, including the right to independent personal decisions and the right to knowledge of available choices, shall not be infringed and the facility shall encourage and assist in the fullest possible exercise of these rights. A patient or resident may meet with, and participate in the activities of social, religious, and community groups at his or her discretion, unless medically contraindicated as documented by the attending physician in the medical records.

Unexpected Outcome
Patients and, when appropriate, their families are informed about the outcomes of care, including anticipated outcomes.

Pain Management
Patients have the right to have their pain managed. As a patient at Lakeland, you can expect:
 • information about pain and pain relief measures
 • initial assessment and regular reassessment of pain
 • a staff committed to pain prevention and management
 • health professionals who respond to reports of pain in a timely manner
 • your reports of pain will be believed
 • to have your pain managed according to the most currently accepted practice
 • to be informed and involved in decisions regarding aspects of your pain management.

A patient and his/her family, as appropriate, has the right to be informed and participate in ethical questions that arise during the course of their care, including issues of conflict resolution, withholding resuscitative services, forgoing or withdrawal of life-sustaining treatment, and participation in investigational studies or clinical trials.

Information Regarding Patient Rights
Patient's will be informed of their rights in the following manner:
 • A copy of the attached Patient Bill of Rights will be given to inpatients when they register.
 • A copy of the Patient Bill of Rights is included in the bedside patient handbook.
 • The Patient Bill of Rights is displayed in all outpatient sites and copies are made available to the outpatient.
 • Staff will be informed of patient's rights and their role in supporting these rights during new associate orientation (via the Newcomer Handbook) and in nursing orientation.

Protective Services
Patients have the right to access protective services and associates provide patients with written information about those agencies, if requested to do so.




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    Lakeland Medical Center, St. Joseph  
    Lakeland Hospital, Niles  
    Lakeland Hospital, Watervliet  
    Center for Outpatient Services, St. Joseph  

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© 2014   Lakeland HealthCare   1234 Napier Avenue   St. Joseph, Michigan 49085   1-800-968-0115
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