Videos about your Private Health Information and Medical Records, HIPAA Security and Encryption Standards, Privacy Practice Statement and Social Media Policy
According to HHS.gov website, as a patient, you have certain rights. Some are guaranteed by federal law, such as the right to get a copy of your medical records, and the right to keep them private. Many states have additional laws protecting patients, and healthcare facilities often have a patient bill of rights of their own. An important patient right is informed consent. This means that if you need a treatment, your health care provider must give you the information you need to make a decision. Many hospitals have patient advocates who can help you if you have problems. Many states have an ombudsman office for problems with long term care. Your state’s department of health may also be able to help. If you are looking for an insurance-related bill of rights, you might be interested in this information:
- A patient’s rights and responsibilities under the Affordable Care Act are found on the HealthCare.gov website at: https://www.healthcare.gov/how-does-the-health-care-law-protect-me/.
- Your Medicare rights are explained at: http://www.medicare.gov/claims-and-appeals/medicare-rights/medicare-rights-overview.html.
For current videos as updated on the HHS website, please follow this link: https://www.hhs.gov/hipaa/for-individuals/guidance-materials-for-consumers/index.html
Certain states and jurisdictions have specific sections of statute that list and include some form of a patient bill of rights. Some of these “rights” are not in statute, but may appear in the regulatory rules set by the various licensing boards. Many states do not yet include, as a part of their “patient bill of rights”, a Social Media Policy Statement or a standard Privacy Statement.
The following is a general summary of some of your rights in general terms.The Patient Bill of Rights requires that your health care provider or health care facility recognize your rights while you are receiving medical care and that you respect the health care provider’s or health care facility’s right to expect certain behavior on the part of it’s clients or patients. You may request a copy of the full text of this document from your health care provider or health care facility. This is one summary of your rights and responsibilities.
PATIENT BILL OF RIGHTS
► A patient has the right to be treated with courtesy and respect, with appreciation of his or her individual dignity, and with protection of his or her need for privacy.
► A patient has the right to a prompt and reasonable response to questions and requests.
► A patient has the right to know who is providing medical services and who is responsible for his or her care.
► A patient has the right to know what patient support services are available, including whether an interpreter is available if he or she does not speak English.
► A patient has the right to know what rules and regulations apply to his or her conduct.
► A patient has the right to be given by the health care provider information concerning diagnosis, planned course of treatment, alternatives, risks, and prognosis.
► A patient has the right to refuse any treatment, except as otherwise provided by law.
► A patient has the right to be given, upon request, full information and necessary counseling on the availability of known financial resources for his or her care.
► A patient who is eligible for Medicare has the right to know, upon request and in advance of treatment, whether the health care provider or health care facility accepts the Medicare assignment rate.
► A patient has the right to receive, upon request, prior to treatment, a reasonable estimate of charges for medical care.
► A patient has the right to receive a copy of a reasonably clear and understandable, itemized bill and, upon request, to have the charges explained.
► A patient has the right to impartial access to medical treatment or accommodations, regardless of race, national origin, religion, handicap, or source of payment.
► A patient has the right to treatment for any emergency medical condition that will deteriorate from failure to provide treatment.
► A patient has the right to know if medical treatment is for purposes of experimental research and to give his or her consent or refusal to participate in such experimental research.
► A patient has the right to express grievances regarding any violation of his or her rights, as stated in Florida law, through the grievance procedure of the health care provider or health care facility which served him or her and to the appropriate state licensing agency.
► A patient is responsible for providing to the health care provider, to the best of his or her knowledge, accurate and complete information about present complaints, past illnesses, hospitalizations, medications, and other matters relating to his or her health.
► A patient is responsible for reporting unexpected changes in his or her condition to the health care provider.
► A patient is responsible for reporting to the health care provider whether he or she comprehends a contemplated course of action and what is expected of him or her.
► A patient is responsible for following the treatment plan recommended by the health care provider.
► A patient is responsible for keeping appointments and, when he or she is unable to do so for any reason, for notifying the health care provider or health care facility.
► A patient is responsible for his or her actions if he or she refuses treatment or does not follow the health care provider’s instructions.
► A patient is responsible for assuring that the financial obligations of his or her health care are fulfilled as promptly as possible.
► A patient is responsible for following health care facility rules and regulations affecting patient care and conduct.
If you are using, or wish to use health insurance to access care, it is helpful to know that some health information may be reported by your insurance company (not by a provider) to a national insurance data collection organization (operating in the US since 1902). A provider who bills insurance will use various diagnosis codes in billing the insurance company; in certain scenarios health information that is sent to your insurance company as a matter of billing, could be forwarded by that company to the MIB (see below) without your specifically expressed permission. Most insurance companies participate in what was once called the Medical Information Bureau, still operating as MIB. More information can be found here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MIB_Group. In self pay scenarios, since the insurance company is not billed with a diagnosis code, the sharing of such information, if it were reported, is not occurring.