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Patient Rights & Responsibilities

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Notice of Patients' Rights

Signature Healthcare is committed to providing its patients with the highest quality care in accordance with the Massachusetts Patients' Rights Statute, Chapter 111, Section 70E, Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, Conditions of Participation for Hospitals, and The Joint Commission Hospital Accreditation Standards. The following rights apply to all patients at Signature Healthcare. Patients have a right to receive written notice of these rights.
 

Summary of Massachusetts Patients' Rights Statute

All patients have the right to freedom of choice in their selection of Signature Healthcare, a Signature Healthcare physician or health service at Signature Healthcare, except in the case of emergency medical treatment or as otherwise provided for by contract as long as the physician, Signature Healthcare or health service is able to accommodate your choice.

Each patient shall have the right to receive an itemized bill of laboratory charges, pharmaceutical charges and third-party credits and shall be allowed to examine an explanation of the bill regardless of the source of payment. This information shall also be made available to your attending physician.

 

In Addition, Every Signature Healthcare Patient Shall Have the Right to:
  • Receive medical care without regard to race, creed, color, national origin, religion, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, age (within guidelines), or disability;
  • Upon request, obtain from the facility in charge of your care the name and specialty, if any, of the physician or other person responsible for your care or the coordination of your care;
  • Confidentiality of all records and communications to the extent provided by law;
  • Have all reasonable requests responded to promptly and adequately within the capacity of the facility;
  • Upon request, obtain an explanation as to the relationship, if any, of the facility to any other health care facility or educational institution insofar as said relationship relates to your care or treatment;
  • Obtain from a person designated by the facility a copy of any rules or regulations of the facility which apply to your conduct as a patient or resident. Signature Healthcare's ability to effectively communicate to you is very important. If you cannot read them or understand them, someone will translate or explain them to you;
  • Upon request, receive from a person designated by the facility any information which the facility has available relative to financial assistance and free health care;
  • Upon request, inspect your medical records and to receive a copy in accordance with the law;
  • Refuse to be examined, observed, or treated by students or any other facility staff without jeopardizing access to psychiatric, psychological, or other medical care and attention;
  • Refuse to serve as a research subject and to refuse any care or examination when the primary purpose is educational or informational rather than therapeutic;
  • Privacy during medical treatment or other rendering of care within the capacity of the facility;
  • Prompt life saving treatment in an emergency without discrimination on account of economic status or source of payment and without delaying treatment for purposes of prior discussion of the source of payment unless such delay can be imposed without material risk to your health, and this right shall also extend to those persons not already patients or residents of a facility if said facility has a certified emergency care unit;
  • Informed consent to the extent provided by law, including being informed of your health status and being able to request or refuse treatment;
  • Upon request, receive a copy of an itemized bill or other statement of charges submitted to any third party by the facility for your care and to have a copy of said itemized bill or statement sent to your attending physician;
  • If refused treatment because of economic status or the lack of a source of payment, prompt and safe transfer to a facility which agrees to receive and treat such patient. Said facility refusing to treat such patient shall be responsible for: ascertaining that you may be safely transferred; contacting a facility willing to treat such patient; arranging the transportation; accompanying you with necessary and appropriate professional staff to assist in the safety and comfort of the transfer, assure that the receiving facility assumes the necessary care promptly, and provide pertinent medical information about your condition; and maintaining records of the foregoing;
  • If you are a female rape victim of childbearing age, receive medically and factually accurate written information prepared by the commissioner of public health about emergency contraception; to be promptly offered emergency contraception; and to be provided with emergency contraception upon request;
  • Participate in the development and implementation of your plan of care
  • Upon request, receive information regarding access to special services including advocacy services and protective services;
  • Refuse to consent to care, treatment or services to the extent permitted by law. You also have the right to be fully informed of the effects of refusing treatment and the potential medical consequences of your decision;
  • Except when emergency services are required, have a physician or other clinician provide you with sufficient information that you can understand about your condition, planned treatment, procedures, including potential benefits, risks or side effects, and prognosis so that you may be involved in decisions regarding your care, treatment and services;
  • Make advance directives;
  • Have a family member promptly notified of your admission to the hospital;
  • Have a clear explanation of the results and outcomes of any treatment or procedure, including unanticipated outcomes;
  • Receive care that incorporates pain management;
  • Be free from physical or mental abuse and corporate punishment. You have the right to be free from restraint 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 your immediate physical safety, or the immediate physical safety of a staff member, or others and must be discontinued at the earliest possible time;
  • Be free from mental, physical, sexual, and verbal abuse, neglect and exploitation;
  • Receive care in a positive environment that preserves dignity and contributes to a positive self image;
  • Have your decisions regarding organ donation honored within the limit of the law or hospital capacity;     
  • Be informed by your physician or other clinician of any ongoing needs following your discharge and the availability of resources in your community that can assist you; and
  • Be transferred to another hospital in Massachusetts. A transfer will be made only when medically appropriate and only when appropriate information related to the care, treatment and services provided is exchanged with care providers at the receiving facility. Any transfer, except in an emergency, would be fully explained and provisions for continuity of care would be made.
Every Signature Healthcare Patient Shall be Provided By Your Signature Healthcare Physician the Right to:
  • Informed consent to the extent provided by law, including being informed of your health status and being able to request or refuse treatment;
  • Privacy during medical treatment or other rendering of care within the capacity of the facility;
  • Refuse to be examined, observed, or treated by students or any other facility staff without jeopardizing access to psychiatric, psychological or other medical care and attention;
  • Refuse to serve as a research subject, and to refuse any care or examination when the primary purpose is educational or informational rather than therapeutic;
  • Prompt life saving treatment in an emergency without discrimination on account of economic status or source of payment and without delaying treatment for purposes of prior discussion of source of payment unless such delay can be imposed without material risk to your health;
  • Upon request, obtain an explanation as to the relationship, if any, of the physician to any other health care facility or educational institutions insofar as said relationship relates to your care or treatment, and such explanation shall include said physician's ownership or financial interest, if any, in the facility or other health care facilities insofar as said ownership relates to the care or treatment of said patient or resident;
  • Upon request, receive an itemized bill including third party reimbursements paid toward said bill, regardless of the sources of payment;
  • In the case of a patient suffering from any form of breast cancer, complete information on all alternative treatments which are medically viable.

 

Breast Implants

Except in cases of emergency surgery, at least ten days before a physician operates on a patient to insert a breast implant, the physician shall inform you of the disadvantages and risks associated with breast implantation. The information shall include, but not be limited to, the standardized written summary provided by the department. You shall sign a statement provided by the department acknowledging the receipt of said standardized written summary. Nothing herein shall be construed as causing any liability of the department due to any action or omission by said department relative to the information provided pursuant to this paragraph.
 

Maternity Patients

Every maternity patient, at the time of pre-admission, shall receive complete information from an admitting hospital on its annual rate of primary caesarian sections, annual rate of repeat caesarian sections, annual rate of total caesarian sections, annual percentage of women who have had a caesarian section who have had a subsequent successful vaginal birth, annual percentage of deliveries in birthing rooms and labor-delivery-recovery or labor-delivery-recovery-postpartum rooms, annual percentage of deliveries by certified nurse-midwives, annual percentage which were continuously externally monitored only, annual percentage which were continuously internally monitored only, annual percentage which were monitored both internally and externally, annual percentages utilizing intravenous, inductions, augmentation, forceps, episiotomies, spinals, epidurals and general anesthesia, and its annual percentage of women breast-feeding upon discharge from said hospital.
 

Sexual Assault Patients

All persons who provide care to victims of sexual assault to be provided with medically and factually accurate written information prepared by the commissioner about emergency contraception. Every female rape victim of childbearing age who presents at a facility after a rape shall promptly be provided with medically and factually accurate written information prepared by the commissioner about emergency contraception. Facilities that provide emergency care shall promptly offer emergency contraception at the facility to each female rape victim of childbearing age, and shall initiate emergency contraception upon your request. For each facility initiating emergency contraception, the administrator, manager or other person in charge thereof shall annually report to the department of public health the number of times emergency contraception is administered to victims of rape under this section. Reports made pursuant to this section shall not identify any individual patient, shall be confidential and shall not be public record.
 

Signature Healthcare Staff Identification

All persons, including students, who examine, observe or treat a patient or resident of a Signature Healthcare facility are required to wear an identification badge which readily discloses the first name, licensure status, if any, and staff position of the person so examining, observing or treating a patient or resident.

 

With Respect to Privacy and Confidentiality, Every Signature Healthcare Patient Shall Have the Right to:
  • Have privacy during medical treatment or other rendering of care;
  • Have confidentiality of all records and communications in accordance with Massachusetts and federal law;
  • Access information contained in your clinical records within a reasonable time frame and to receive a copy of your clinical records in accordance with Massachusetts law;
  • Receive a copy of Signature Healthcare's privacy practices at the time of your registration;
  • Request that no information contained in the patient directory be disclosed to anyone not directly involved with your care;
  • Request that Signature Healthcare personnel communicate your confidential health information only in accordance with applicable law and privacy practices;
  • Not have your confidential information discussed in public areas;
  • To find out how your confidential health information may be used and what disclosures have been made as required by state and federal law;
  • Request certain restrictions of the use or disclosure of your health information unless it interferes with patient care, treatment, or operations;
  • Deny visitors to the extent permitted by law. This right does not apply to people who are directly involved in your care;
  • Request an amendment or correction to your confidential health information, if you believe the information is incomplete or incorrect as permitted by applicable law;
  • Refuse any contacts for fundraising or marketing activities; and
  • File a complaint about any of Signature Healthcare's health information practices by contacting the Privacy Officer at 508-941-7072. Or if you believe your rights have been violated, you may contact:

The Office of Civil Rights
United States Department of
Health and Human Services
200 Independence Avenue SW
Washington, DC 20201

 

Every Signature Healthcare Patient Shall be Responsible for:
  • Respecting the rights of other patients, families and hospital personnel and observing any rules or regulations adopted by Signature Healthcare related to patient care and conduct;
  • Sharing accurate and complete information regarding your health, such as a complete health history, symptoms, treatments, medicines you take and any other information that could effect your health or care;
  • Establishing identity in order to protect the privacy and confidentiality of their records as well as those of other Hospital patients;
  • Following any treatment plan or instructions provided to you by your physicians, nurses or other health care providers and asking questions or voicing concerns if you do not understand your care or treatment or do not believe you cannot follow such plan;


Any person whose rights under Massachusetts law are violated may bring any action allowed by law or regulation.

No provision of this section relating to confidentiality of records shall be construed to prevent any third party reimburser from inspecting and copying, in the ordinary course of determining eligibility for or entitlement to benefits, any and all records relating to diagnosis, treatment, or other services provided to any person, including a minor or incompetent, for which coverage, benefit or reimbursement is claimed, so long as the policy or certificate under which the claim is made provides that such access to such records is permitted. No provision of this section relating to confidentiality of records shall be construed to prevent access to any such records in connection with any peer review or utilization review procedures applied and implemented in good faith.
 

If You Have a Complaint:

If you have a complaint regarding your experience with Signature Healthcare, any of its facilities or personnel, you may bring your concerns to the Patient Representative from the Department of Quality Resources at 508-941-7356. Additionally, you may submit your complaint in writing to: the Patient Representative in the Quality Resources Department at Signature Healthcare Brockton Hospital, 680 Centre Street, Brockton, MA 02302. All grievances will be addressed within 7 days of receipt.

If your grievances are not resolved to your satisfaction, you may file a complaint with:

The Division Of Health Care Quality
Department of Public Health
99 Chauncy Street
Boston, Massachusetts 02111
617-753-8000

The Office of Quality Monitoring
Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations
One Renaissance Boulevard
Oakbrook Terrace, Illinois 60181
630-792-5636 (fax)

Board of Registration in Medicine
200 Harvard Mill Square, Suite 330
Wakefield, MA 01880
781-867-8200


Nurse-to-Staff Ratios

 

Quarter

ICU Name

Average Daily
Census

Average Daily Staff
Nurse Census

Average Daily Staff
Nurse-to-Patient Ratio

Jan - Mar 2016

CCU

14

9

1:1.6

Apr - June 2016

CCU

12

8

1:1.4

July - Sept 2016

CCU

12.71

7.95

1:1.6

Oct - Dec 2016

CCU

12.56

8.43

1:1.5

Jan - Mar 2017

CCU

13.5

7.8

1:1.7

Apr - June 2017

CCU

11.79

9.2

1:1.27

July - Sept 2017

CCU

11.61

8.2

1:1.4

Oct - Dec 2017

CCU

12.16

7.98

1:1.5

Jan - Mar 2018

CCU

14.14

8.49

1:1.7

Apr - June 2018

CCU

11.35

7.87

1:1.4