Healthcare facilities are required to provide for and respect the rights and responsibilities of patients/clients, families, health workers and other health care providers.
Healthcare facilities are also expected to be sensitive to patient’s socio-cultural and religious backgrounds, age, gender and other differences as well as the needs of patients with disabilities.
The patient’s charter ensures that service personnel, as well as patients/clients and their families, understand their rights and responsibilities.
The Patient Charter addresses:
- The Right of the individual to an easily accessible, equitable and comprehensive health care of the highest quality within the resources of the country.
- Respect for the patient as an individual with a right of choice in the decision of his/her health care plans.
- The Right to protection from discrimination based on culture, ethnicity, language, religion, gender, age and type of illness or disability.
- The responsibility of the patient/client for personal and communal health through preventive, promotive and simple. curative strategies.
- These rights and responsibilities shall be exercised by accredited and recognized representatives on behalf of minors and patients who are unable for whatever reasons to make informed decisions by themselves; in all healthcare activities the patient’s dignity and interest must be paramount.
THE PATIENT’S RIGHTS
- The patient has the right to quality basic health care irrespective of his/her geographical location.
- The patient is entitled to full information on his/her condition and management and the possible risks involved except in emergency situations when the patient is unable to make a decision and the need for treatment is urgent.
- The patient is entitled to know of alternative treatment(s) and other health care providers within the Service if these may contribute to improved outcomes.
- The patient has the right to know the identity of all his/her caregivers and other persons who may handle him/her including students, trainees and ancillary workers.
- The patient has the right to consent or decline to participate in a proposed research study involving him or her after a full explanation has been given. The patient may withdraw at any stage of the research project.
- A patient who declines to participate in or withdraws from a research project is entitled to the most effective care available.
- The patient has the right to privacy during consultation, examination and treatment. In cases where it is necessary to use the patient or his/her case notes for teaching and conferences, the consent of the patient must be sought.
- The patient is entitled to confidentiality of information obtained about him or her and such information shall not be disclosed to a third party without his/her consent or the person entitled to act on his/her behalf except where such information is required by law or is in the public interest.
- The patient is entitled to all relevant information regarding policies and regulation of the health facilities that he/she attends.
- Procedures for complaints, disputes and conflict resolution shall be explained to patients or their accredited representatives.
- Hospital charges, mode of payments and all forms of anticipated expenditure shall be explained to the patient prior to treatment.
- Exemption facilities, if any, shall be made known to the patient.
- The patient is entitled to personal safety and reasonable security of property within the confines of the Institution.
- The patient has the right to a second medical opinion if he/she so desires.
THE PATIENT’S RESPONSIBILITIES
The patient should understand that he/she is responsible for his/her own health and should therefore co-operate fully with healthcare providers. The patient is responsible for:
- Providing full and accurate medical history for his/her diagnosis, treatment, counseling and rehabilitation purposes.
- Requesting additional information and or clarification regarding his/her health or treatment, which may not have been well understood.
- Complying with prescribed treatment, reporting adverse effects and adhering, to follow up requests.
- Informing his/her healthcare providers of any anticipated problems in following prescribed treatment or advice.
- Obtaining all necessary information, which have a bearing on his/her management and treatment including all financial implications.
- Acquiring knowledge, on preventive, promotive and simple curative practices and where necessary to seeking early professional help.
- Maintaining safe and hygienic environment in order to promote good health.
- Respecting the rights of other patients/clients and Health Service personnel
- Protecting the property of the Health facility.