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Consumer rights and responsibilities

  • Alternative Names

    Health care consumer's rights; Rights of the health care consumer

  • Information

    In March 1998, the Advisory Commission on Consumer Protection and Quality in the Health Care Industry issued its final report, which included the Consumer Bill of Rights and Responsibilities. The Commission was appointed by President Bill Clinton, and co-chaired by Donna Shalala, Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services.

    The purpose of the Bill of Rights is:

    • To build up consumer confidence in the health care system, by making it easy for consumers to participate actively in their own health care.
    • To strongly support the importance of a good healthcare provider and that of a good provider-patient relationship.
    • To emphasize and support the importance of the consumers' role in making sure they have rights and responsibilities with regard to health improvement.

    The following section, Consumer Bill of Rights, was developed by the federal government. This has been used as a foundation for many health plans, including the federal-government-sponsored health plans.

    Consumer Bill of Rights

    I. Information Disclosure

    You have the right to receive accurate and easily understood information about your health plan, health care professionals, and health care facilities. If you speak another language, have a physical or mental disability, or just don't understand something, assistance will be provided so you can make informed health care decisions.

    II. Choice of Providers and Plans

    You have the right to a choice of health care providers that is sufficient to provide you with access to appropriate high-quality health care.

    III. Access to Emergency Services

    If you have severe pain, an injury, or sudden illness that convinces you that your health is in serious jeopardy, you have the right to receive screening and stabilization emergency services whenever and wherever needed, without prior authorization or financial penalty.

    IV. Participation in Treatment Decisions

    You have the right to know all your treatment options and to participate in decisions about your care. Parents, guardians, family members, or other individuals that you designate can represent you if you cannot make your own decisions.

    V. Respect and Nondiscrimination

    You have the right to considerate, respectful and nondiscriminatory care from your doctors, health plan representatives, and other health care providers.

    VI. Confidentiality of Health Information

    You have the right to talk in confidence with health care providers and to have your health care information protected. You also have the right to review and copy your own medical record and request that your physician amend your record if it is not accurate, relevant, or complete.

    VII. Complaints and Appeals

    You have the right to a fair, fast and objective review of any complaint you have against your health plan, doctors, hospitals or other health care personnel. This includes complaints about waiting times, operating hours, the conduct of health care personnel, and the adequacy of health care facilities.

    Consumer Responsibilities

    In addition to outlining consumer rights for health care, the Advisory Commission on Consumer Protection and Quality in the Health Care Industry also outlined guidelines for the responsibilities that the consumer has with regard to their own healthcare. The responsibilities outlined are ways that the consumer can work together with the health care provider to achieve the best quality health outcome.

    • Take responsibility for maximizing healthy habits, such as exercising, not smoking, and eating a healthy diet.
    • Become involved in specific health care decisions.
    • Work collaboratively with health care providers in developing and carrying out agreed-upon treatment plans.
    • Disclose relevant information and clearly communicate wants and needs.
    • Use the health plan's internal complaint and appeal process to address concerns that may arise.
    • Avoid knowingly spreading disease.
    • Recognize the reality of risks and limits of the science of medical care and the human fallibility of the health care professional.
    • Be aware of a health care provider's obligation to be reasonably efficient and equitable in providing care to other patients and the community.
    • Become knowledgeable about his or her health plan coverage and health plan options (when available) including all covered benefits, limitations and exclusions, rules regarding use of information, and the process to appeal coverage decisions.
    • Show respect for other patients and health workers.
    • Make a good-faith effort to meet financial obligations.
    • Abide by administrative and operational procedures of the health plans and health care providers.
    • Report wrongdoing and fraud to appropriate resources or legal authorities.

    For more information visit the Office for Civil Rights - HIPAA website - www.hhs.gov/ocr/hipaa

  • References

    President's Advisory Commission on Consumer Protection and Quality in the Health Care Industry. Patients’ Rights and Responsibilities. Accessed August 1, 2009

    Bernstein E, Bernstein J, James T. Multiculturalism and care delivery. In: Marx J, ed. Rosen’s Emergency Medicine: Concepts and Clinical Practice. 6th ed. St Philadelphia, Pa: Mosby Elsevier; 2006:chap 203.

Review Date: 8/2/2009

Reviewed By: Linda J. Vorvick, MD, Medical Director, MEDEX Northwest Division of Physician Assistant Studies, University of Washington, School of Medicine. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.

The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. © 1997- 2014 A.D.A.M., Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.
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Christie Clinic Christie Clinic on University Photo Christie Clinic on University
101 West University Avenue Champaign, IL 61820 Main Phone: (217) 366-1200
Billing Services: (217) 366-1382
Toll Free: (888) 391-0412
Christie Clinic Christie Clinic on Windsor/Convenient Care Photo Christie Clinic on Windsor/Convenient Care
1801 West Windsor Road Champaign, IL 61822 (217) 366-8000
Christie Clinic Christie Clinic at Presence Covenant Photo Christie Clinic at Presence Covenant
1400 West Park Street Urbana, IL 61801 (217) 366-1200
Christie Clinic Christie Clinic in Rantoul Photo Christie Clinic in Rantoul
209 West Borman Drive Rantoul, IL 61866 (217) 892-9671
Christie Clinic Christie Clinic in Mahomet/Convenient Care Photo Christie Clinic in Mahomet/Convenient Care
1001 Commercial Drive Mahomet, IL 61853 (217) 586-6600 or (217)366-8130
Christie Clinic Christie Clinic in Danville on Vermilion/Convenient Care Photo Christie Clinic in Danville on Vermilion/Convenient Care
3545 North Vermilion Street Danville, IL 61832 (217) 442-8611
Christie Clinic Christie Clinic in Tuscola Photo Christie Clinic in Tuscola
300 North Main Street Tuscola, IL 61953 (217) 253-9258
Christie Clinic CU Sleep Photo CU Sleep
1207 South Mattis Avenue Champaign, IL 61821 (217) 355-1684
Christie Clinic Christie Clinic Cancer Center Photo Christie Clinic Cancer Center
109 West University Avenue Champaign, IL 61820 (217) 366-5180
Christie Clinic Convenient Care in County Market (Kirby & Duncan) Photo Convenient Care in County Market (Kirby & Duncan)
2901 West Kirby Avenue Champaign, IL 61821 (217) 366-8130
Christie Clinic Christie Clinic in Urbana/Convenient Care Photo Christie Clinic in Urbana/Convenient Care
1710 East Windsor Road Urbana, IL 61802 (217) 344-9440
Christie Clinic Christie Clinic in Danville on Logan Photo Christie Clinic in Danville on Logan
800 North Logan Avenue Danville, IL 61832 (217) 431-8930
Christie Clinic Christie Clinic on Fox Drive Photo Christie Clinic on Fox Drive
2110 Fox Drive, Suite B Champaign, IL 61820
Christie Clinic Kirby Medical Group Specialty Clinic in Monticello Photo Kirby Medical Group Specialty Clinic in Monticello
1109 A. North State Street Monticello, IL 61856 (217) 366-1304
Gibson Area Hospital
1120 N Melvin Gibson City, IL 60936 (217) 784-2240
Christie Clinic Christie Clinic in Mattoon Photo Christie Clinic in Mattoon
105 B Professional Plaza Mattoon, IL 61938 (217) 345-3000
Christie Clinic Sarah Bush Lincoln Health System Photo Sarah Bush Lincoln Health System
1000 Health Center Drive Mattoon, IL 61938 (217) 258-2588
Christie Clinic The Champaign SurgiCenter Photo The Champaign SurgiCenter
1702 S. Mattis Avenue Champaign, IL 61821 (217) 326-2030
Christie Clinic The Carle Foundation Hospital Photo The Carle Foundation Hospital
611 West Park Street Urbana, IL 61801 (217) 383-3311
Iroquois Memorial Hospital
200 E. Fairman Ave. Watseka, IL 60970 (815) 432-5841
Christie Clinic Christie Clinic at Savoy Photo Christie Clinic at Savoy
501 North Dunlap Avenue Savoy, IL 61874 Transformations: (217) 366-7460 Internal Medicine: (217) 366-5434 Ophthalmology: (217) 366-1250
Christie Clinic at 410 E. University
410 E. University Champaign, IL 61820
Christie Clinic on West Park Street
1405 West Park Street Urbana, IL 61801 217-366-1237
Christie Clinic in Monticello
107 West Main Street Monticello, IL 61856 217.762.3352