We are committed to providing excellent care in the most personal, sympathetic, confidential and dignified manner possible.
We make every effort to be responsive to our patients' and their families' psychosocial, spiritual and cultural value concerns. We are dedicated to using our resources to help prevent illness, restore and maintain health, and provide support, pain management and comfort when death is inevitable.
We believe that a patient's rights and responsibilities are an integral part of health care. We endorse the American Hospital Association's "Patient's Bill of Rights" which supports the rights and responsibilities of patients.
Aurora BayCare Medical Center wants you to know you have rights as a patient, including the right to make decisions about your health care. Under Wisconsin State law, every patient or his or her designated representative shall be given, at the time of registration, a copy of the document that outlines patient rights and responsibilities. An Ethics Committee is available to support those making difficult health care decisions. You shall have the opportunity to participate to the fullest extent possible in planning for your care and treatment.
Access to Care
You shall be provided impartial access to treatment or accommodations that are available and medically indicated, regardless of race, creed, color, national origin, ancestry, religion, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, age, newborn status, handicap or source of payment. If you are disabled, you have the right to request modifications and accommodations of policies, procedures and practices in order to afford you any goods, services, facilities, privileges, accommodations and advantages as a non-disabled patient, unless provision of such modifications would:
- Fundamentally alter an Aurora BayCare program, services, goods, privileges, advantages or accommodations; or
- Compromise patient care.
Respect and Dignity
You have the right to considerate, respectful care at all times and under all circumstances, with recognition of your individual dignity and personal needs, including the need for privacy in treatment. You have the right to be free from restraints of any form that are not medically necessary or for your safety or the safety of others. You have the right to be free from all forms of abuse or harassment.
Privacy and Confidentiality
You have the right to privacy, as manifested by the right to:
- Refuse to talk or see anyone not officially connected to the hospital, including all visitors or persons officially connected with the hospital, but who are not directly involved in your care.
- Wear appropriate personal clothing and religious or other symbolic items, as long as they do not interfere with diagnostic procedures or treatment.
- Be interviewed and examined in surroundings designed to assure reasonable privacy.
- Expect that any discussion or consultation involving your case will be conducted discreetly and with respect for your privacy rights.
- Have your medical record, including all computerized medical information, read only by individuals directly involved in your treatment or in the monitoring and evaluation of your care or charges, unless otherwise requested by you. Other individuals may have access only with your written authorization or that of your legally authorized representative.
- Expect all communications and other records pertaining to your care, including source of payment for treatment, to be treated as confidential.
- Request a transfer to another room if a patient or visitor is unreasonably disturbing you.
You have the right, subject to your consent, to receive the visitors that you designate. These visitors include, but are not limited to, a spouse, domestic partner (including same-sex domestic partner), another family member and/or friend. You have the right to withdraw or deny such consent at any time. Visitors will not be restricted or limited or otherwise deny visitation privileges on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender identify, sexual orientation or disability. In some cases, due to clinical or safety reasons, a limitation on visitation may be necessary. In such cases the hospital will discuss this with you and/or a family member.
You have the right to know the name, function and qualifications of individuals providing service to you, and to know which physician or other practitioner has overall responsibility for your care.
You have the right to obtain, from the practitioner responsible for coordinating your care, complete and current information concerning your diagnosis (to the degree known), course of treatment and any known prognosis for recovery. This information should be communicated in terms you can reasonably be expected to understand. When it is not medically advisable to give you such information, the information should be made available to a legally authorized individual. You have the right to refuse this information.
You, or any person authorized by law, have a right to access your medical record. You have a right to access, request amendment to, and receive an accounting of disclosures regarding your own health information as permitted under applicable law.
You, or your legally authorized representative, have a right to be informed about the outcomes of care, treatment and services, including unanticipated outcomes.
You have the right of access to people outside the hospital by means of visitors and by verbal and written communication. When you do not speak or understand the predominant language of the community, you will have access to an interpreter. You have a right to designate persons who are permitted to visit you during your hospital stay. You have the right to have a family member or representative of your choice and your own physician notified promptly of your admission to the hospital.
You have the right to expect safety concerning our practices and environment.
Except in emergencies, you or your legally authorized representative's consent shall be obtained before treatment is administered. You may refuse treatment to the extent permitted by law and shall be informed of the medical consequences of the refusal. To the degree possible, responses to your questions and requests should be based on a clear concise explanation of your condition and of all proposed technical procedures, including the possibilities of any risk of mortality or serious side effects, problems related to recuperation, and probability of success. You should not be subjected to any procedure without your consent, or that of your legally authorized representative. Where medically significant alternatives for care or treatment exist, you shall be so informed.
You have the right to know who is responsible for authorizing and performing the procedures or treatments.
You have a right to informed consent to be filmed or photographed, a right to request cessation, and a right to rescind the consent.
You may be asked to participate in a research study. Taking part in such studies is your choice. If you decide not to participate, this will not affect the quality of the care you receive. You or your legally authorized representative shall give prior informed consent for your participation in any form of research.
You have the right to appropriate assessment and management of pain.
You have the right, at your own request and expense, to consult with a specialist. You have the right to access protective services. Assistance is provided and referrals are made according to state law. Resource information is provided upon request.
Refusal of Treatment
You may refuse treatment to the extent permitted by law. When refusal of treatment by you or your legally authorized representative prevents the provision of appropriate care in accordance with ethical and professional standards, the relationship between you and your health care providers may have to be terminated, after reasonable notice.
You have the right to formulate Advance Directives and appoint a surrogate to make health care decisions on your behalf, to the extent permitted by law. You will receive information about Advance Directives, you will have an opportunity to create an Advance Directive, it will be made part of your permanent medical record, and the terms of your Advance Directive will be followed by the staff, to the extent allowed by law. You will receive care even though you may not have an Advance Directive.
For services rendered in an outpatient hospital department, upon request, the hospital helps patients formulate a medical advance directive or refers them for assistance.
Transfer and Continuity of Care
Except in the event of an emergency, you will not be transferred to another facility without being given a full explanation for the transfer, without provisions being made for continuing care and without acceptance by the receiving institution.
You have a right to examine your hospital bill and receive an explanation of the bill, regardless of your source of payment, and you shall receive, upon request, information relating to financial assistance available through the hospital. You have the right to timely notice prior to termination of your eligibility for reimbursement by any third-party payer. In addition, you have the right to be given, upon request, full information and necessary counseling on the availability of known financial resources for your care; to know, upon request, and in advance of treatment, whether the health care provider or health care facility accepts Medicare assignment; and to receive, upon request, prior to treatment, a reasonable estimate of charges for medical care.
- Comply with hospital rules, cooperate in your own treatment, provide a complete and accurate medical history, including current symptoms, medications you are taking, and other matters concerning your health. Be respectful of other patients, staff and property, and provide required information concerning payment of charges.
- Notify your physician or nurse about any unexpected change in your condition that concerns you.
- Take part in the development of the treatment plan with your physician and other members of the health care team. Follow the plan of care unless you have concerns, which at that time need to be expressed. If the plan of care is revised as result of the concern, you will receive the possible consequences of not carrying out the recommended plan of care. You are responsible for the outcomes if you do not follow the plan of care.
- Pay attention to the care you are receiving.
- Don't be afraid to ask about safety measures the hospital is taking to protect you.
- Educate yourself about your diagnosis, the medical tests you are undergoing and all your options.
- Make sure your health care professional knows your identity before he or she gives any medication or treatment.
- Consider asking a trusted family member or friend to be your advocate, to assist you in decisions and ask questions for you while you are under stress.
- Expect health care workers to introduce themselves when they enter your room and look for their name badges.
- Ask questions when you do not understand what you have been told about your care. If you don't understand, ask again.
- Be considerate of other patients and hospital staff by not making unnecessary noise, smoking or causing distractions.
- Do everything to make sure your bills are paid as promptly as possible.
Reporting Complaints & Concerns
We value your feedback. If you have a concern, please contact any staff member. You have a right to be told about our policy and procedure on concerns. Please contact a manager at the site at which you received care if you would like additional information on our policy and procedure on concerns, including how to submit a concern, how concerns are reviewed, the time frame for review of concerns, when to expect a written response, and what the outcomes of concerns may be. You also may contact a manager or administrator at the site at which you received care if you have a concern that has not been addressed.
Aurora BayCare Medical Center
You also have the right to file a complaint by contacting:
Wisconsin Division of Quality Assurance
P.O. Box 2969
Madison, WI 53701-2969
Phone: 608-266-8481 or 800-642-6552
Office of Quality Monitoring
The Joint Commission
One Renaissance Boulevard
Oakbrook Terrace, IL 60181
References: Wisconsin Administrative Code HFS 124.05
Comprehensive Accreditation Manual for Hospitals
Hospital Interpretive Guidelines – Patient Rights