Blessing Health System issued the following announcement on Feb. 11.
Teaching people, helping them to understand their health and how the choices they make impacts their health, is as much a part of caregiving as taking vital signs.
So, let’s learn.
The Bill of Rights comprises the first ten amendments to the United States Constitution. It contains rights designed to guarantee individual freedom.
Those, however, are not your only rights.
As a healthcare consumer, you are guaranteed “patient rights” by the organizations and individuals who deliver your care. These rights are designed to define your role and protect your interests when receiving healthcare.
Both the American Hospital Association and the American Medical Association have lists of patient rights. Among the rights defined by both organizations is the patient’s right to make treatment decisions. That is a power you hold - not your healthcare provider - you. A treatment decision may be as simple as where to have a lab test done or X-ray taken, or as complicated as whether or not to have surgery or a life-sustaining treatment.
There was a day when patients did as they were told by their providers. Things have changed.
As the knowledge base of the healthcare consumer has developed over the years, and the cost of care has climbed and value has become a critical element of the decision-making process, the relationship between the patient and provider has developed into a partnership, built on the exchange of ideas. Decisions are made based as much on the patient’s perspective as the provider’s. The provider has an important role in this process, of understanding your condition and personal values, and informing you of your treatment options and the benefits and drawbacks to each option. In the end, the decision of how to move forward with your care, if to move forward at all, rests with you - whether it involves a lab test or X-ray, or surgery.
Two-way communication and mutual decision-making create the foundation of a healthy relationship in any aspect of life, healthcare included. If you don’t feel you have this type of relationship with your healthcare provider, ask them about it. If you have not yet exercised your rights as a patient, it is in your best interest to do so and to begin building a partnership with your provider. I am sure they would welcome your participation.
It’s your health life. It’s your life. It’s your choice.
Original source can be found here.
Source: Blessing Health System