Patient Rights & Responsibilities for Hospice/HHC

January 21, 2014

Fremont Health
Home Health Care and Hospice

Patient Bill of Rights and Responsibilities

These rights will be respected by all Agency personnel and integrated into all Home Health/Hospice Agency programs.  A copy of these rights shall be given to all patients upon the commencement of services or to the patients’ family, guardian, or authorized representative when the patient has been judged to be incompetent.

  1. The patient is fully informed of all his rights and responsibilities and has the right to appropriate and professional care related to physicians orders.  The patient has the right to receive information regarding advance directives. 
  2. The patient has the right of choice of care providers & the right to communicate with the providers. The patient has the right to choose the agency that provides their care.  Fremont Health will advise the patient in advance of the disciplines that will furnish care, and the frequency of the visits proposed. 
  3. Prior to receiving care, the patient has the right to be fully informed, orally and in writing, of agency policies and charges for services, including their eligibility for third party reimbursement and the extent to which payment may be required from the patient.  Fremont Health must advise the patient orally and in writing, as soon as possible, but no later than 30 calendar days from the date Fremont Health becomes aware of a change in cost to patient or payor source.
  4. The patient has the right to receive information necessary to give informed consent prior to the start of any procedure or treatment including alternatives to care and risks involved, and also has the right to refuse treatment within the confines of the law and to be informed of the consequences of his action.
  5. The patient has the right to receive a timely response from the agency to his request for service but will be admitted for service only if the agency has the ability to provide safe professional care at the level of intensity needed.  The patient has the right to reasonable continuity of care.
  6. The patient has the right to privacy and confidentiality of all records, communications and personal information and may review all health records pertaining to them unless it is medically contraindicated in the clinical record by the physician.
  7. Patients shall have the right to be free from verbal, physical, and psychological abuse and to be treated with dignity.  They have the right to receive care without discrimination as to race, color, creed, sex, age, national origin, and disability.
  8. The patient has the right to prevent the agency individual from using, removing, altering or consuming any personal item without expressed consent and the right to have their property treated with respect.
  9. Patients have the right to participate in the planning and revising of their care and the right to appropriate instruction and education regarding the plan and must be advised in advance of any changes in the plan of care before the change is made.
  10. The patient must receive at least a two week notice prior to an anticipated termination of service or plans for transfer to another agency.
  11. A patient denied service will receive an oral and a written explanation regarding denial and information regarding community resources. 
  12. The patient and the public have the right to honest, accurate and forthright information regarding the home health care/hospice industry in general and his chosen agency in particular, e.g. cost/visit, employee qualification, etc.
  13. The patient has the right to voice complaints/grievances and suggest change in service or staff without fear of reprisal or discrimination.  Complaints made by the patient/designee and received by Fermont Health must be investigated.  Fremont Health must document the existence and the resolution of the complaint.  The patient/designee must be informed of the outcome/resolution of the complaint/grievance.
  14. The patient has the right to designate which family member (s) be excluded from information about and participation in his or her health care decisions.
  15. The patient has the right to request an Ethics Consultation if the patient or legal representative feel there is an ethical dilemma in the deliverance of his/her care through the Home Health Care/Hospice agency.  Ethics Committee members are available thru the Fremnt Health Medical Center switchboard (721-1610).
  16. The patient has the right to call the Medicare Agency Hotline 1-800-245-5832 to register complaints and ask questions 24 hours per day.
  17. The Hospice patient has the right to the full range of services provided by the hospice.
  18. The patient has the right to exercise religious beliefs.
  19. The patient has the right to expect pain relief.  Measures will be instituted to ensure comfort.
  20. The patient has the right to expect all efforts will be made to ensure continuity and quality of care in the home and in the inpatient setting.
  21. The patient is responsible for keeping appointments with all Home Health Care/Hospice staff.  If you cannot be available, you have the responsibility to notify Home Health Care/Hospice well ahead of the scheduled visit time.
  22. The patient has the responsibility to report any unexpected changes in their condition to their health care team.
  23. The patient has the responsibility to provide the staff with truthful, accurate information regarding their emotional, mental, and physical condition and to provide a safe environment for the Home Health Care/Hospice staff.
  24. The patient is responsible to express any concerns about their understanding of the course of  treatment, to follow instructions of the health care professionals involved in the patient’s treatment and express concerns about  their ability to comply with these instructions.
  25. The patient and his/her family are responsible for fulfilling the financial obligations of his/her care per hospital policy.
  26. The patient should be aware that the staff is eager to assist, in turn, the patient should be  courteous and considerate.
  27. The patient is responsible to notify the agency when a piece of rental equipment is no longer needed.
  28. The patient should be aware that the gratuities (tips) are strictly against the Home Health Care/Hospice regulations and serve no useful purpose.
  29. Has the right to formulate advance directives and have the agency comply with the directives unless the agency notifies the patient of the inability to do so.  Advance directives include living wills, durable powers of attorney, powers of attorney for healthcare, or other instructions recognized by state law that relate to the provision of medical care if the individual becomes incapacitated.
  30. Has the right to request information about their diagnosis, prognosis, and treatment, including alternatives to care and risks involved in terms that they and their families or designee can readily understand so they can give their informed consent.
  31. Patient’s and families are encouraged to be actively involved in their care to promote safety and may contact their primary nurse or the HHC/Hospice department at 402-941-7333 to report any safety concerns.
  32. Any patient who is not already bound by the organization’s confidentiality policy signs a confidentiality statement to protect the patients’ identity and confidential information and has the right to withhold informed consent to produce or use recordings, films, or other images of the patient for purposes other than his or her care before engaging in the production of recordings, films, or other images.
  33. Joint Commission standards deal with organizational quality of care issues and the safety of the environment in which care is provided.  Anyone believing that he or she has pertinent and valid information about such matters may request a public information interview with the Joint Commission's field representatives at the time of survey.  Information presented at the interview will be carefully evaluated for relevance to the accreditation process.  The requests must also indicate the nature of the information to be provided at the interview.  Valid complaints may be addressed to the Joint Commission, in the following manners:

Home Health Care and Hospice Patient Rights & Responsibilities Policy

Home Health Care and Hospice Grievance Procedures and Complaint Process