Patients at Penn State Hershey Rehabilitation Hospital are entitled to the rights afforded to them under local, state and federal regulations, as well as hospital policy, including:
- Non-discrimination – To receive treatment and services without discrimination based on race, age, religion, national origin, sex, sexual preferences, handicap, diagnosis, ability to pay or source of payment.
- Personal Dignity – To be treated with courtesy, consideration, respect and recognition of dignity, individuality, and right to privacy, including, but not limited to, auditory and visual privacy and confidentiality concerning patient treatment and disclosures.
- Communication – To receive an explanation of his or her plan of care, expected results and reasonable alternatives in terms that the patient understands, and, if necessary, to receive the services of a translator or interpreter to facilitate communication between the patient and health care personnel. If the patient is not able to understand the information or if knowledge of the information would be detrimental to the patient's health, an explanation shall be provided to a family member or individual who is a legal representative of the patient and is so documented in the patient's medical record.
- Participation – To participate in the planning of his or her rehabilitation care and treatment; and to request and receive the care and services that have been ordered.
- Informed Consent – To ask questions and be involved in decisions about the care and treatment prescribed and/or rendered and to discuss such decisions with his/her family or other caregivers.
- Right of Refusal – To refuse services, including medication and treatment, provided by the hospital, to be informed of available rehabilitation treatment options, including the option of no treatment, and to be informed of the possible benefits and risks of each option. Patients also have the right to refuse to participate in experimental research. If he/she chooses to participate, his/her written informed consent shall be obtained.
- Confidentiality – To be assured of confidential treatment of his/her medical and/or health record, including the opportunity to approve or refuse in writing its release to any individual outside the rehabilitation hospital, except as required by law or third party payment contract.
- Safe Environment of Care – To be free from mental and physical abuse, as well as from exploitation and harassment; and to be free from restraints, unless they are authorized by a physician for a limited period of time to protect the patient’s safety or others from injury.
- Caregiver Identification – To know the names and professional status of doctors, nurses, therapists and other members of the treatment team who provide or are responsible for patient care.
- Medical Transfer – To be transferred to another facility if the patient’s medical condition warrants a type or level of medical or emergency care not available at this hospital. The hospital shall make an immediate effort to notify the patient's primary care physician and the next of kin.
- Continuing Care – To be informed by the attending physician and/or other members of the treatment team about the need for any continuing care after discharge; to receive sufficient time to make arrangements for such care, treatment or services; and to be assisted in obtaining the necessary follow-up care.
- Health Care Decisions – To retain and exercise to the fullest extent possible all the constitutional, civil, and legal rights to which he or she is entitled by law, including religious liberties, the right to independent personal decisions, and the right to provide instructions and directions for health care in the event of future decision making incapacity in accordance with applicable federal and state regulations.
- Access to Medical Information – To have prompt access to the information contained in his/ her medical record, unless a physician prohibits such access as detrimental to the patient's health, and explains the reason in the medical record. In that instance, the patient's next of kin or guardians shall have a right to see the record. This right continues after the patient is discharged from the hospital for as long as the hospital has a copy of the record.
- Access to Medical Records – To obtain a copy of his/her medical records, at a reasonable fee, within 30 days of a written request to the hospital. If access by the patient is medically contraindicated (as documented by a physician in the patient's medical record), the medical records shall be made available to a legally authorized representative of the patient or the patient's physician.
- Complaints – To express grievances regarding care and services to the designated contacts on rehabilitation hospital's staff and governing authority without fear of reprisal, and to receive an answer to those grievances with a reasonable period of time.
- Financial Information – To receive full information regarding financial arrangements, including, but not limited to: fees and charges, including any fees and charges for services not covered by insurance; copies of written records of financial arrangements; notification of any additional charges, expenses, or other financial liabilities in excess of the predetermined fee; and a description of agreements with third-party payers and/or other payers and referral systems for patients' financial assistance.
The Joint Commission standards deal with organization quality and safety-of-care issues and the safety of the environment in which care is provided. Anyone believing that they have pertinent and valid information about such matters can write to:
Division of Accreditation Operations
Office of Quality Monitoring
The Joint Commission
One Renaissance Boulevard
Oakbrook Terrace, IL 60181
Or fax information to 630.792,5636 or e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org