Patients Rights & Responsibilities

Your Rights

Access to Care

You will receive appropriate treatment and services regardless of sex or your cultural, economic, educational, or religious background or the source of payment for your care. You will receive considerate, respectful care from qualified personnel who respect your personal values and belief system.


Every consideration will be shown for your individual privacy during interviews and examinations.  This includes the right to request that a person of your own sex be present during certain parts of your physical examination, procedure or treatment.  Patients have the right to a “safe setting” and to be free of abuse or harassment.

Identity of Physicians & Staff

You will be told the name of the physician who has primary responsibility for coordinating your care and the names and professional relationships of the other physicians and staff will provide care and treatment.  You have the right to have your physician and a representative notified upon your admission to the hospital.

Confidentiality & Access to Medical Records

Information pertaining to your diagnosis, care and method of payment will be kept confidential and not be released to other parties without your consent.

You have the right to access your medical records from the physician.  Such information includes your diagnosis, treatment and prognosis communicated in language you can reasonably be expected to understand.  In an emergency, if you should lack the capability to make decisions, the information will be made available to a legally authorized individual.

Healthcare Decision Making

  • You have the right to be given the information necessary to allow you to actively participate in developing and implementing your plan of care.
  • You have the right to be informed of the outcomes of care, including unanticipated outcomes.
  • You have the right to request an Ethics consult to help resolve dilemmas about the care decisions.
  • You also have the right to request to change to another physician or transfer to another health facility for religious or other reasons.

Consult Another Physician

You have the right to use a specialist or to request an opinion from another physician.


You have the right to communicate with people outside the hospital by having personal visits and verbal or written communication. If you do not speak or understand the predominant language of the community, someone will be provided to interpret medical information.

Informed Consent

You will be given information about the medical procedures or treatments that require your consent including:
  • Potential benefits & risk
  • Potential problems related to recuperation
  • The likelihood of success
  • The possible results of non-treatment
  • Any significant alternatives
In some cases of medical emergency, consent to treat may be presumed.

Pain Management

You have the right to appropriate assessment and management of pain.  As a patient, you can expect:
  • Initial assessment and regular reassessment of pain.
  • Education regarding role in managing pain, as well as the potential limitations and side effects of pain treatment.
  • Information about pain management and pain relief measures.
  • A concerned staff committed to pain prevention.
  • Health professionals who respond quickly to reports of pain.
  • State-of-the-art pain management.

Refusal of Treatment

You may refuse treatment to the extent permitted by law.  You will be informed of the medical consequences of refusing treatment or leaving the hospital against medical advice, neither the hospital nor the physician(s) will be responsible for any harm that action may cause you or any other person.

Continuing Care

You have the right to expect reasonable continuity of care and to be informed by physicians and other caregivers of available and realistic options for care when hospital care is no longer appropriate.


You may not be transferred to another facility or organization unless you or your representative have received an explanation concerning the need for transfer, the risks, benefits and alternatives of such a transfer.  The transfer will not be arranged unless it is acceptable to the receiving facility or organization.

Explanation of Hospital Charges

You have the right to be informed about hospital charges for services and available payment methods.  You have the right to examine your hospital bill and receive an explanation of the bill, regardless of source of payment.  You shall receive upon request, information relating to financial assistance available through the hospital.

Explanation of Hospital Rules and Regulations

You will be informed of rules and regulations which apply to your conduct as a patient.

Advance Directives

You have the right to have an advance directive (such as a Living Will or Durable Power of attorney for Healthcare) concerning treatment with the expectation that the hospital will honor the intent of that directive to the extent permitted by law and hospital policy.

Restraint for Acute Medical and Surgical Care

Patients have the right to be free from restraints of any form that are not medically necessary or are used as a means of coercion, discipline, convenience or retaliation by the staff.

Seclusion & Restraint for Behavior Management

Patients have the right to be free from seclusion and restraints, of any form, imposed as a means of coercion, discipline, convenience or retaliation by the staff.

Childrens’ Rights

Door County Medical Center recognizes that all patients have rights and responsibilities.  Our pediatric patients have unique and special rights.
  • Children will not be subjected to any medical treatment without prior consent from a parent or legal guardian.  The only exception to this is in the event of an emergency.  In a life-threatening situation, treatment would begin immediately.
  • Children have the unique right to have their legal guardian serve as their advocate.
  • Children have a right during their hospitalization to socialization appropriate to their age and medical condition.
  • Children have the right to continue their educational endeavors while hospitalized.

Participation in Research

You or your legally authorized representative shall give prior informed consent for your participation in any form of research.

Designation of Your Visitors

You have the right to designate who you would like to have visit during your stay as well as who you would not want to visit.

Your Responsibilities

The effectiveness of patient care and satisfaction with the course of treatment depend, in part, on the patient fulfilling certain responsibilities.

Provision of Information

You have the responsibility to provide, to the best of your knowledge, accurate and complete information about the present complaints, past illnesses, hospitalizations, medications, and other matters relating to your health.  You are responsible for reporting whether you clearly understand a course of treatment and to request additional information for clarification.

Compliance Instructions

You are responsible for following the treatment plan recommended by the practitioner primarily responsible for your care.  This may include following instructions or keeping appointments and notifying the responsible practitioner or the hospital if you are unable to do so.  You are responsible for informing your physician and other care givers if you anticipate problems in following your prescribed treatment.

Pain Management

As a patient, we expect that you will:
  • Ask your doctor or nurse what to expect regarding pain and pain management.
  • Discuss pain relief options with your doctor or nurse.
  • Work with your doctor and nurse to develop a pain management plan.
  • Ask for pain relief when pain first begins.
  • Help your doctor and nurse measure your pain.
  • Tell the doctor or nurse if your pain is not relieved.

Refusal of Treatment

You are responsible for your actions if you refuse treatment or do not follow the practitioner’s instructions.

Payment of Charges

You are responsible for providing necessary information for insurance claims and for working with the hospital to make payment arrangements, when necessary.

Hospital Rules and Regulations

You are responsible for following hospital rules and regulations affecting patient care and conduct, including the “No Smoking” policy.

Advance Directives

You are responsible for insuring that the hospital has a copy of your written advance directive, if you have one.  You are responsible for informing your physician and other care givers if you have made changes to your advance directive.

Respect and Consideration

You are responsible for being considerate of the rights of other patients and hospital personnel and for assisting in the control of noise.  You are responsible for being respectful of the property of other persons and of the hospital and for following hospital policy regarding number of visitors.

Concerns or Questions About Your Rights & Responsibilities

You have the right to voice your questions, concerns or complaints about your care in our hospital, and to know about resources such as social services, pastoral care, or ethics committees that can help you resolve your problems or answer questions about your hospital stay or care.  You may do this without fear that it will compromise your care or future access to our services.  If you have questions or feel that your rights may have been violated, we encourage you to contact our Social Services Department at 920-743-5566 ext. 3622.  To file a complaint, contact the Quality Management Department at 1-800-522-8919 or 920-746-3510.

If a patient, or anyone representing the patient’s interests, has a concern with the patients care and treatment or believes the patient’s rights have been violated and the hospital has not resolved these concerns, a complaint may be filed (without discrimination or reprisal for voicing concerns) by writing or calling:

Division of Quality Assurance
PO Box 2969
Madison, WI 53701-2969
Phone:  608-266-8481
Fax:  608-267-0352