Patient Rights

Patient Rights, Visitation and Responsibilities

Riverside’s commitment to you

All patients have the right:

  • To know by name the physicians, nurses and other providers responsible for coordinating and providing your care and to speak freely with your caregiver.
  • To hear from your primary physician, in language that you can understand and prefer, your diagnosis, the treatment prescribed for you and the prognosis of your illness. When your physician determines that it is not medically advisable to give such information to you, the information should be available to an appropriate person on your behalf.
  • To be able to access interpretation and translation services in support of your care.
  • To know the reason why you are given various tests or treatments and who the persons are who give them to you.
  • To considerate care that respects your personal values and cultural, religious, and ethical beliefs.
  • To know the general nature and inherent risk of any procedure or treatment that is prescribed for you.
  • To change your mind about any procedure for which you have given your consent, provided that you let your physician know of your decision before you have been medicated.
  • To refuse to sign a consent form if you do not feel that everything has been satisfactorily explained to you.
  • To cross out any part of the consent form that you do not want applied to your care.
  • To refuse treatment to the extent permitted by law and to be informed of the medical consequences of this action.
  • To request that a person of the same sex be present during an examination by someone of the opposite sex.
  • To be provided with an explanation of your visitation rights and any clinical limitations on such rights, including the reason for limitations.
  • To be assured that visitors enjoy full and equal visitation privileges consistent with your preferences and reasonable clinical / operational limitations.
  • To be assured visitation privileges will not be restricted on the basis of age, race, ethnicity, national origin, culture, language, physical or mental disability, socioeconomic status, religion, sex, gender identity or expression, or sexual orientation.
  • To have your, or your legal decision maker’s requests for receiving visitors of your choosing and to also refuse visitors or withdraw consent to see visitors of your choosing at any time.
  • To expect that your personal privacy, medical record and confidentiality will be respected to the fullest extent consistent with the treatment prescribed for you and in accordance with legal requirements.
  • To request, either directly or through your own physician, a consultation from another or additional physicians, if you so desire.
  • To change physicians and change hospitals.
  • To examine your bill and receive an explanation of it.
  • To refuse to participate in medical training programs or research projects.
  • To be offered the opportunity to complete an Advance Directive describing what kinds of care you would like if you become incapacitated and to name the person who would make decisions for you. To receive assistance in completing the Advance Directive if requested, and to rescind it at any time.
  • To participate in the consideration of ethical issues that arise in your care.
  • To impartial access to healthcare services without regard to age, race, ethnicity, national origin, culture, language, physical or mental disability, socioeconomic status, religion, sex, gender identity or expression, or sexual orientation.
  • To appropriate assessment and management of pain.
  • To be free from seclusion and restraint, of any form, that is not medically necessary.
  • To receive care in a safe setting that is free from all forms of physical or mental abuse, exploitation and neglect.
  • To access information contained within your medical record within a reasonable time frame.
  • To voice complaints or recommend changes freely without being subject to coercion, discrimination, reprisal or unreasonable interruption of care.
  • To have a designated support person(s). To learn more, please read here

Your commitment to Riverside

All patients have the responsibility:

  • To provide accurate and complete information, to the best of your knowledge, about matters relating to your health. All patients and families are responsible for reporting perceived risks in their care and unexpected changes in the patient’s condition.
    To respect the privacy of other patients and to follow Riverside’s instructions, policies, rules and regulations in place to support quality care for you and a safe environment for all individuals in the hospital.
  • To exhibit mutual consideration and respect with staff for your care by maintaining civil language and conduct in all interactions.
  • To notify your physician, nurse manager, nurse or appropriate health care provider if you do not understand and need further explanation concerning your diagnosis, treatment, and prognosis.
  • To ask visitors to conduct themselves in a responsible way consistent with the clinical and operational needs of our patients, so as to promote a safe, quiet and healing environment for patients and to let your physician or nurse know if you are receiving too many visitors from outside the facility.
  • To abide by the tobacco use policy of Riverside Health System (no tobacco use on campus).
  • To cooperate and follow the care prescribed for you and to let us know if you are in pain so that it may be assessed.
  • To let us know if you are dissatisfied with any aspect of your care or if you feel that any of your rights have been violated. You may do this through your physician, nurse manager or by calling the Caring Connection (see Communications section below).
  • To meet your financial obligations to the hospital. As a non-profit institution, Riverside Health System depends upon income from patient accounts to maintain its financial stability and meet its obligations. For information regarding Riverside Health System’s Financial Assistance Program, you can call the Riverside Customer Service Center at 757-989-8830 option 3 or 800-675-6368 option 3.

Riverside Health System recognizes the importance of a patient’s participation in all aspects of their care. Executing an advance directive is one option that expresses personal health care choices. An advance directive is a legal form that lists your wishes about medical care and treatment. You may also name someone to make choices about your medical care and treatment if you can’t. Advance Care Directives are written in advance of a serious illness, to let other people know your wishes. The Patient Self Determination Act (effective Dec. 1, 1991) mandates that all health care institutions provide adult patients with written information about their rights to make decisions concerning their medical care. The execution and possession of an Advance Directive is a completely personal choice. The decision is the patients.

Visit here for more information on Advanced Cared Directives.