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Patient Rights

Take Charge of Your Health Care

Speak up and ask questions. You can improve your care and the care of your family by taking an active role in your health care.

Review Date: January 16, 2013

National Health Information Center - NHIC
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Frequently Asked Questions in Ethics

Learn to identify medically unethical conduct and how to file a complaint against a physician, hospital, or health plan that violates the Code of Medical Ethics.

Review Date: January 16, 2013

American Medical Association

HIPAA - Frequently Asked Questions

The HIPAA Privacy Rule protects the privacy of your health information; it says who can look at and receive your health information, and also gives you specific rights over that information.

Review Date: January 16, 2013

Office for Civil Rights, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Medicare Rights National Helpline

Call 1-800-333-4114 to speak to a trained counselor who can answer your questions about Medicare health plan options, rights and benefits, and help you get the care and medications you need. Services are available to Spanish-language speakers.

Review Date: July 11, 2014

Medicare Rights Center

Patient Frequently Asked Questions: American Medical Association

Find answers to common questions patients ask of the American Medical Association, including finding a doctor, medical advice, medical records, and filing complaints.

Review Date: January 16, 2013

American Medical Association

Advance Directives (Cancer Information Service)

This fact sheet provides patients with an outline for thinking about end-of-life issues and some guidelines for discussion with their doctors, families, and loved ones.

Review Date: January 16, 2013

NIH National Cancer Institute

Family and Medical Leave Act

The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) requires covered employers to provide up to 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave to ''eligible'' employees for certain family and medical reasons. Also, find links to laws and regulations about the FMLA.

Review Date: January 31, 2013

Wage and Hour Division, U.S. Department of Labor

Giving Your Informed Consent

This document covers questions you should ask your doctor before consenting to surgery. The topics covered include the risks involved in the procedure, what to expect during the recovery period following surgery, and more.

Review Date: January 16, 2013

American College of Surgeons

HealthIT.gov: Patients and Families

Learn how health information technology can lead to safer, better, and more efficient health care. Find tools and tips on protecting your health information privacy.

Review Date: January 16, 2013

Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology

Locate a Long Term Care Ombudsman

Search for a long-term care ombudsmen in your area who promotes residents' rights and quality of care, educates consumers and providers, and helps resolve residents' complaints.

Review Date: January 16, 2013

National Consumer Voice for Quality Long Term Care

Navigating the Health Care System: How To Complain—And Get Heard

Here are some resources for complaints or concerns that arise while you are in the hospital and when you get your hospital bill.

Review Date: January 16, 2013

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality

Right to Access Medical Records

The HIPAA Privacy Rule gives you rights over your health information and sets rules and limits on who can look at and receive your health information. Get answers to common questions about who can access to your medical records.

Review Date: January 16, 2013

Office for Civil Rights, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

State Specific Advance Directive/Living Will

None of us knows when a future event might leave us unable to speak for ourselves. Download your state-approved advanced directive to create and share a written record of your health care wishes.

Review Date: January 16, 2013

Compassion & Choices

The Patient Care Partnership: Understanding Expectations, Rights and Responsibilities

This plain language brochure replaces AHA's Patients' Bill of Rights and informs patients about what they should expect during their hospital stay with regard to their rights and responsibilities. The brochure is available in multiple languages.

Review Date: January 16, 2013

American Hospital Association

Understanding HIPAA Privacy: For Consumers

Learn about the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) Privacy Rule, a Federal law that gives you rights and sets limits on who can look at and receive your health information.

Review Date: January 16, 2013

Office for Civil Rights, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

What Should You Ask Before Agreeing to Participate in a Research Study?

The decision to participate in a research study should be made after careful consideration of the risks, benefits, and alternative treatments. This fact sheet provides questions meant to serve as a guide to help with this decision-making process.

Review Date: January 16, 2013

Mental Health America

Your Medicare Rights and Protections- (PDF)

Learn your Medicare rights designed to protect you when you receive health care. Know what health care services you are entitled to receive by law, how to file an appeal, and how your privacy is protected.

Review Date: January 16, 2013

Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services