Patient Rights & Responsibilities

The patient (or when appropriate the patient’s representative, as allowed under State law) has the right to:

  • Treatment regardless of race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, ethnicity, age or handicap status;
  • Considerate and respectful care which includes consideration of the psychosocial, spiritual and cultural variables that influence the perceptions of illness;
  • Expect that, within its capacity and policies, Riverview Health will make a reasonable response to the request of a patient for appropriate and medically indicated care and services;
  • Have a family member (or representative of his/her choice) and personal physician notified promptly of his/her admission to the hospital;
  • Be informed, whenever possible, of Patient Rights in advance of Riverview Health furnishing or discontinuing patient care;
  • Know the reasons for any proposed change in the professional staff responsible for his/her care;
  • Participate in the development and implementation of his/her plan of care including, but not limited to, the inpatient treatment/care plan, outpatient treatment/care plan, discharge plan and pain management plan;
  • Make informed decisions regarding his/her care;
  • Be informed of his/her health status, be involved in care planning and treatment, be able to request or refuse treatment to the extent permitted by law, and to be informed of the medical consequences of such refusal. This right will not be construed as a mechanism to demand the provision of treatment or services deemed medically unnecessary or inappropriate;
  • Be informed about the outcomes of care including unanticipated outcomes that differ significantly from the anticipated outcome;
  • Consult with a specialist, at his/her own request and expense;
  • Have pain treated as effectively as possible within the hospital’s capacity;
  • Pastoral and other spiritual services;
  • Formulate advance directives, including a psychiatric advance directive, to the extent permitted by law and to have Riverview Health staff and practitioners who provide care at Riverview Health comply with the directives;
  • Personal privacy;
  • Confidentiality of his/her clinical records except in cases, including, but not limited to, suspected abuse and public health hazards, when reporting is permitted or required by law;
  • Access information contained in his/her clinical records within a reasonable time frame except when restricted by law;
  • Receive care in a safe setting;
  • Be free from physical or mental abuse, harassment, corporal punishment and all other forms of abuse;
  • Be free from restraints or seclusion of any form that are not medically necessary or are used as a means of coercion, discipline, convenience or retaliation by staff;
  • Be informed (or support person, where appropriate) of his/her visitation rights including any clinical restriction or limitation on such rights, when he/she is informed of his/her other rights;
  • Be informed (or support person, where appropriate) of the right, subject to his/her consent, to receive the visitors whom he or she designates, including, but not limited to, a spouse, a domestic partner (including a same sex domestic partner), another family member, or a friend, and his/her right to withdraw or deny such consent at any time.
    • The hospital will not restrict, limit or otherwise deny visitation privileges on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation or disability. The hospital will ensure that all visitors enjoy full and equal visitation privileges consistent with patient preferences;
  • Refuse to talk with or see anyone not officially connected with Riverview Health, including visitors, or persons officially connected with Riverview Health but not directly involved in his/her care;
  • Have access to an interpreter when he/she does not speak or understand the predominant language of the community;
  • Know the identity and professional status of any person providing his/her care/services and to know which physician or other practitioner is primarily responsible for his/her care;
  • Know the reasons for his/her transfer either within or outside of Riverview Health;
  • Expect reasonable continuity of care when appropriate, be informed by physicians and other caregivers of available and realistic patient care options when hospital care is no longer appropriate, and be informed of the mechanism for the initiation, review and resolution of patient complaints concerning premature discharge;
  • Be informed by the practitioner responsible for his/her care, or the practitioner’s delegate, of any continuing health care requirements following discharge from the hospital;
  • Be fully informed of and consent to or refuse to participate in any unusual, experimental, or research project without compromising his/her access to services;
  • Refuse to participate in research or clinical training programs and to refuse use of his/her medical information for research;
  • Know the immediate and long-term financial implications of treatment choices, insofar as they are known;
  • Access to the cost, itemized when possible, of services rendered within a reasonable period of time regardless of the source of payment for his/her care;
  • Be informed of the source of the hospital’s reimbursement for his/her services, and of any limitations which may be placed upon his/her care;
  • Timely notice prior to termination of his/her eligibility for reimbursement by any third party payer for the cost of his/her care, when possible;
  • Be informed of the relationship(s) of Riverview Health to other persons, organizations or educational institutions participating in the provision of his/her care;
  • Participate in the consideration of ethical issues that arise associated with his/her care;
  • Prompt resolution of grievances and be informed of whom to contact to file a grievance, and be informed of the mechanism for the initiation, review and resolution of complaints concerning the quality of care;
  • Comfort and dignity throughout the dying process, treatment of primary and secondary symptoms that respond to treatment as desired by the patient or surrogate decision maker, effective management of pain, and acknowledgement of psychosocial and spiritual concerns of the patient and the family regarding dying, and the expression of grief by the patient and family;
  • Request information regarding organ procurement and to make his/her wishes known as to whether or not he/she wants to be an organ donor to the extent allowed by state and federal law;
    • After a patient’s death, the patient’s family has the right of informed consent for donation of organs and tissues.
  • Have his/her guardian, next of kin, or legally authorized responsible person exercise the rights delineated on his/her behalf if determined by his/her physician to be mentally incompetent or medically incapable of understanding the proposed treatment or procedure, is unable to communicate his/her wishes regarding treatment, or is a minor;
  • Receive information regarding patient rights and responsibilities.

As a patient, you have the responsibility to:

  • Wear an identification armband at all times;
  • Provide complete and accurate information about your health;
  • Report effects of the treatment you receive while a patient on the patient care unit;
  • Report pain accurately to your care provider;
  • Participate in the development of your treatment plan;
  • Attend therapy sessions and participate in activities prescribed by your care provider;
  • Be considerate of the rights of other patients.

Complaints or grievances

Our goal is to deliver excellent healthcare to our patients and we believe that all complaints or grievances are an opportunity to improve patient care. To discuss concerns about any aspect of your care, treatment or stay while in the hospital, you are encouraged to speak to the Department Manager or Nursing Supervisor, or call the Organizational Improvement Department at 317.776.7230. In addition to, or instead of contacting a Riverview Health representative, you may also contact the Indiana State Department of Health in writing at 2 North Meridian Street, Indianapolis, IN 46204 or call toll-free at 800.382-9480. If you are a Medicare beneficiary, you have the right to request Riverview Health to refer your concern to the Quality Improvement Organization.

A copy of Patient Rights and Responsibilities is available upon request or at