Patient Rights & Responsibilities

Patient Rights & Responsibilities

header-title-decorationPatient Rights & Responsibilities

As a patient, you have the right to: 

  1. Impartial access to available medically indicated treatment, regardless of race, creed, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, or sources of payment for care.
  2. Considerate and respectful care.
  3. Know the name of the physician who has primary responsibility for coordinating your care and the names and professional relationships of other physicians and non-physicians who will see you.
  4. Receive information about your illness, the course of treatment and prospects for recovery in terms that you can understand.
  5. Receive as much information about any proposed treatment or procedure as you may need in order to give informed consent or to refuse their course of treatment. Except in emergencies, this information shall include a description of the procedure or treatment, the medically significant risks involved in this treatment, alternative courses of treatment or non-treatment and the risks involved in each and to know the name of the person who will carry out the procedure or treatment.
  6. Pain management.
  7. Reasonable responses to any reasonable requests made for service.
  8. Refuse care, treatment, and services.
  9. Written information, if you are an adult patient, about your right to accept or refuse medical or surgical treatment including foregoing or withdrawing life-sustaining treatment or withholding resuscitative services.
  10. Leave the hospital even against the advice of physicians, except when limited by law.
  11. Form advance directives and appoint a person to make health care decisions on their behalf, to the extent permitted by law. The person selected to make the decisions for the patient may be the patient’s guardian, next of kin, or legally authorized responsible person. The legally authorized representative shall have the same rights as the patient if a physician finds the patient to be incompetent and medically incapable of understanding or providing an informed consent to proposed treatments or procedures.
  12. Have all Patient Rights apply to the person who may have legal responsibility to make decisions regarding medical care on your behalf.
  13. Full consideration of privacy concerning the medical care program. Case discussion, consultation, examination and treatment are confidential and should be conducted discreetly. You have the right to be advised as to the reason for the presence of any individual.
  14. Confidential treatment of all communications and records pertaining to your care and your stay in the hospital. Written permission shall be obtained before your medical records may be made available to anyone not directly concerned with the case.
  15. Reasonable continuity of care and to know in advance the time and location of an appointment as well as the identity of persons providing their care.
  16. Advised if hospital/personal physician proposes to engage in or perform human experimentation affecting your care or treatment. You have the right to refuse to participate in such research projects.
  17. Be informed on continuing health care requirements following discharge.
  18. Expect reasonable safety in areas controlled by hospital staff.
  19. Be free from physical or mental abuse and corporal punishment.
  20. Be free from restraints or seclusion of any form, imposed as a means of coercion, discipline, convenience, or retaliation by staff. Restraint or seclusion may only be imposed to ensure the immediate physical safety of the patient, staff member, or others and must be discontinued at the earliest possible time.
  21. Examine and receive an explanation of the bill regardless of source of payment.
  22. Know which hospital rules and policies apply to patients’ conduct while a patient.
  23. A copy of the contents of your their medical record, to the extent permitted by law. LA General Medical Center charges a per page fee for copies of medical records. Patients have the right to duplicate their records after signing a Release of Information form. You also have the right to expect confidential treatment of all communications and records pertaining to their medical care and must give written permission if records are to be made available to anyone not directly concerned with your care.
  24. Designate visitors of your choosing, if you have has decision-making capacity, whether or not the visitor is related by blood or marriage.
  25. Have your cultural, psychological, spiritual, and personal beliefs and preferences respected.
  26. Have the hospital accommodate your desire for pastoral and other spiritual services.
  27. Address grievances concerning these rights or any other policy or procedure of the hospital agency or government body having jurisdiction over this facility.
  28. File complaints or grievances. Complaints are handled by the Customer Service Department.


Patients have the right to schedule an interview with a licensing or credentialing agency listed below: 

Division of Accreditation Operations 

Office of Quality Monitoring 

The Joint Commission 

One Renaissance Blvd 

Oakbrook Terrace, IL 60181 

Fax: (630) 792-5636 


Institute for Medical Quality 

221 Main Street, Suite 210 

San Francisco, CA 94105 

Phone: (415) 882-5151 


Dept. of Health and Human Services 

Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services 

7500 Security Blvd. Mail Stop S2-12-25 

Baltimore, Maryland 21244-1850 

Phone: (800) 633-4227 


California Dept. of Public Health 

Licensing and Certification Division 

Information Hotline: (800) 236-9747 


Patient Safety Hotline 

County of Los Angeles – Health Service Administration 

(213) 989-SAFE (7233) or (800) 611-4365 


As a patient at LA General Medical Center, you have the responsibilities for: 

  1. Providing, to the best of your knowledge, accurate and complete information about present complaints, past illnesses, hospitalizations, medications and other matters relating to your health. You have the responsibility to report unexpected changes in your condition to the responsible health care provider.
  2. Making known whether you understand contemplated courses of action and what is expected of you.
  3. Your actions if treatment is refused or if instructions of the physician are not followed.
  4. Following the treatment plan recommended by the health care provider primarily responsible for your care. This includes following instructions of allied health staff as they carry out the plan of care and implement the physician’s orders, and as they enforce applicable hospital rules and regulations.
  5. Being considerate for the rights of other patients and hospital personnel and for assisting in the control of noise, smoking and the number of visitors. Patients are responsible for being respectful of the property of other persons and of the hospital.
  6. Following hospital rules and regulations affecting patient care and conduct.
  7. Assuring that financial obligations of health care are fulfilled as promptly as possible.


SOURCE: Title 22 of the California Code of Regulations and the Joint Commission