For Patients

Patient Rights and Responsibilities

St. Mary Medical Center encourages respect for the personal preferences and values of each individual. When you need hospital care, your doctor, nurses and other professionals at St. Mary Medical Center are committed to working with you and your family to meet your health care needs. Our staff serves the community in all its ethnic, religious and economic diversities. Our goal is for you and your family to have the same care and attention we would want for our families and ourselves.

High-Quality Hospital Care

Our first priority is to provide you with the care you need—when you need it—with skill, compassion and respect. Tell your caregivers if you have any concerns about your care or if you have pain. You have the right to know the identity of doctors, nurses and others involved in your care and you have the right to know when they are students, residents or other trainees.

A Clean and Safe Environment

Our hospital works hard to keep you safe. We use special policies and procedures to avoid mistakes in your care and keep you free from abuse or neglect. If anything unexpected and significant happens during your hospital stay, you will be told what happened and any resulting changes in your care will be discussed with you.

Involvement in Your Care

You and your doctor often make decisions about your care before you go to the hospital. Other times, especially in emergencies, those decisions are made during your hospital stay. When decision-making takes place, it should include discussing your medical condition and information about medically appropriate treatment choices.

To make informed decisions with your doctor, you need to understand:

  • The benefits and risks of each treatment
  • Whether your treatment is experimental or part of a research study
  • What you can reasonably expect from your treatment and any long-term effects it might have on your quality of life
  • What you and your family will need to do after you leave the hospital
  • The financial consequences of using uncovered services or out-of-network providers.

Please tell your caregivers if you need more information about treatment choices.

Patient Rights English
Derechos Del Paciente

Patient Rights - Pediatric

In addition to the rights of adult patients, the needs of children/adolescents and their parents/guardians shall have the following rights.

Respect for:

  • Each child and adolescent as a unique individual
  • The care-taking role and individual response of the patient
  • Provision for normal physical and physiological needs of a growing child to include nutrition, rest, sleep, warmth, activity and freedom to move and explore
  • Consistent, supportive and nurturing care which:

(a) Meets the emotional and physiological needs of the child

(b) Fosters open communication

  • Provision for self-esteem needs which will be met by attempts to give the child:

(a) The reassuring presence of a caring person, especially a parent

(b) Freedom to express feelings or fears with appropriate reactions

(c) As much control as possible, over both self and situation

(d) Opportunities to work through experiences before and after they occur, verbally, in play or in other appropriate ways

(e) Recognition and reward for coping well during difficult situations

  • Provision for varied and normal stimuli of life which contributes to cognitive, social, emotional and physical developmental needs:

(a) Play, educational and social activities essential to all children and adolescents

(b) Information about what to expect prior to, during and following procedures/experiences, and support in coping with it

(c) Participation of children/families in decisions affecting their own medical treatment

(d) Minimization of SMMC stay duration by recognizing discharge planning needs

Patient Responsibilities - Adult

The care a patient receives depends partially on the patient himself/herself. Therefore, in addition to these rights, a patient has certain responsibilities. These responsibilities should be presented to the patient in the spirit of mutual trust and respect.

  1. The patient has the responsibility to provide accurate and complete information concerning his/her present complaints, past illnesses and hospitalizations and other matters relating to his/her health.
  2. The patient is responsible for making it known whether he/she clearly comprehends the course of medical treatment and what is expected of him/her.
  3. The patient is responsible for following the treatment plan established by his/her physician, including the instructions of nurses and other health professionals as they carry out the physician's orders.
  4. The patient is responsible for his/her actions should he/she refuse treatment or not follow physician's orders.
  5. The patient is responsible for assuring that the financial obligations of his/her care are fulfilled as promptly as possible.
  6. The patient is responsible for being considerate of the rights of other patients and SMMC personnel.
  7. The patient is responsible for being respectful of his/her personal property and that of other persons in SMMC, and abiding by local, state and federal laws.

Family Responsibilities - Pediatric

Parents/family shall have the responsibility for: (family consists of those individuals responsible for physical and emotional care of the child on a continual basis, regardless of whether they are related)

  1. Continuing their parenting role to the extent of their ability
  2. Being available to participate in decision-making and providing staff with knowledge of parent/family whereabouts.

If you have questions at any time, please ask your nurse, doctor, team leader, supervisor or patient representative, as unasked or unanswered questions can add to the stress of being in the hospital. Your comfort and confidence in your care are very important to us.

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