Patient Rights in the American Healthcare System

What rights do American patients have when navigating the American healthcare system? You have rights granted and enforced by law, such as the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) . You also have rights derived from the ethical practice of medicine and fundamental human rights.

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Your legal rights as a patient in the American healthcare system

Let's take a look at your rights.

The right to be treated with respect

All patients, regardless of their funds or health concerns, should expect to be treated with respect and without discrimination by their providers, physicians, and payers.

Eligibility to obtain your medical records

HIPAA 1996 gives patients in the United States the right to receive their medical records, including medical records, medical test results, and other documentation related to their care .

The right to confidentiality of your medical records.

HIPAA also dictates who, other than you (the patient), can receive your records and for what purposes. Patients are often surprised who has these rights. People you think may have access may be denied access. Incorrect access has consequences.

The right to choose treatment.

If the patient is considered to be of sound mind, it is his right and responsibility to learn about the treatment options available for his condition and then make the decision that he believes is right for him. This right is closely related to the right to informed consent.

Right to informed consent

No reputable physician or institution that performs tests, procedures, or treatments will do so without asking the patient or their guardian to sign a consent form. This document is called ' informed consent ' because the physician must provide a clear explanation of the risks and benefits before the patient is involved, although this is not always done as fully as it should be.

The right to refuse treatment.

In most cases, the patient may refuse treatment if they believe that they are capable of making the right decisions, or if they made this decision when they were in their right mind, through written expression (as is often the case when This is the end of the treatment). -Care of life).

There are some exceptions , which means that some patients cannot refuse treatment. These exceptions generally occur when others subsidize a patient's income during a period of injury, illness, or disability.

The right to make decisions about health care at the end of life.

Each state in the United States regulates how patients can legally make and record the decisions they make about how their life will end , including life-saving measures such as the use of feeding tubes or ventilators.

Various patient responsibilities correspond to the rights of these patients. There are also some rights that Americans think they don't have as patients. It is important that you are aware of all this so that you can be sure that you are taking the necessary steps to provide the care you need, want and deserve.

If you believe your patients' rights have been violated, you can discuss it with a hospital patient advocate or with your state health department. Stand up and exercise your rights as a patient.

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