At UCSF Health, we strive to maintain a safe, respectful and supportive environment for all patients and their families. Below, you'll find information about your rights and responsibilities as a patient or as the parent or guardian of a patient.
Patient Rights & Responsibilities
UCSF recognizes the following rights for all patients:
You have the right to dignity and respect
- The right to respect for your cultural, psychosocial, spiritual and personal values, beliefs and preferences.
- The right to a safe health care setting, free from mental, verbal, physical or sexual abuse, neglect, exploitation and harassment. You have the right to access protective and advocacy services; this includes notifying government agencies of neglect or abuse.
- The right to receive appropriate pain management as well as information about pain and pain relief measures. You have the right to participate in pain management decisions.
- The right to be free from any form of restraint or seclusion as a means of coercion, discipline, convenience or retaliation by staff.
You have the right to information
- The right to receive information in terms you can understand about your or your child's diagnosis, treatments, expected treatment outcomes (including unanticipated outcomes) and prospects for recovery.
- The right to request medical interpreter services, if needed, at no cost to you.
- The right to know the name of the health care provider who has primary responsibility for coordinating your or your child's care, as well as the names and professional relationships of other providers involved in this care.
You have the right to participate
- The right to actively participate in the development and implementation of your or your child's health care plan.
- The right to make care decisions and to receive information about any proposed treatment or procedure in order to give informed consent or refuse a course of treatment.
- The right to participate in ethical questions that arise in the course of care, including issues of conflict resolution, withholding resuscitative services, and forgoing or withdrawing life-sustaining treatment. To consult with an ethics committee member, ask your nurse or doctor. At our San Francisco campus, you may also call (415) 353-1000.
- The right to refuse treatment and to leave UCSF against the advice of health care providers, to the extent permitted by law.
- The right to receive a reasonable response to requests to refuse care and treatments, in accordance with laws and regulations.
- The right to have your end-of-life decisions and wishes addressed by the hospital.
You have the right to privacy
- The right to be told the reason for the presence of any individual.
- The right to have non-health-care providers leave before an examination and when treatment issues are being discussed.
- The right to restrict non-UCSF visitors.
- The right to confidential treatment of all communications and records pertaining to your or your child's care and hospital stay, to the extent required by law.
You have the right to raise concerns and complaints
- The right to express concerns or complaints about our care with the assurance that the quality of care or future access to care will not be compromised.
- The right to expect a reasonable and timely response to your concerns.
We encourage you to raise any concerns immediately by speaking with staff or department managers at the time of service, so we can respond quickly. You may also submit complaints or other feedback to our Patient Relations team or to outside agencies. For more information on submitting a complaint, visit Patient Relations.
Patient and family responsibilities
As a patient or as the parent or guardian of a patient, you have the following responsibilities:
You have a responsibility to honor hospital policies
- Wear a hospital-issued ID badge while in the hospital.
- Respect UCSF property and the property of others in the hospital.
- Honor UCSF’s right to restrict visitors so as to ensure the health and safety of patients, staff and other visitors.
- Comply with UCSF policies prohibiting smoking and use of illicit or non-prescribed drugs and alcohol.
- Use the telephone, television and lights with consideration, so that you do not disturb others.
For more information, visit Hospital Policies.
You have a responsibility to communicate with the care team
- Give the care team complete and accurate information about your or your child's health, to the best of your knowledge.
- Alert the care team if you notice changes in your or your child's condition or pain levels.
- Tell the care team if you don't understand the treatment plan or what's expected of you. Health care providers may not know when you're confused or have questions.
- Be respectful when interacting with UCSF staff, other patients and visitors. This includes refraining from inappropriate, discriminatory, harassing or abusive language and behavior.
You have the responsibility to participate and be accountable
- Follow the treatment plan recommended for you or your child by the care team. It is your responsibility to tell the care team if you can't or don't want to follow the recommended treatment plan.
- Make sure you understand how to continue your or your child’s care after leaving UCSF, including when and where to get further treatment.
- Accept the consequences if you choose to refuse treatment or don't comply with the care team's instructions.
- Keep appointments, and call your provider at least 24 hours beforehand (or in the requested time frame) if you need to cancel or reschedule an appointment.
- Pay bills promptly, and if needed, work with your account representative to make payment arrangements.
High-quality care and excellent service are essential parts of our mission, and you have the right to receive nothing less. Please don't hesitate to notify us if you have concerns or questions about your rights or the care you received.
Your child's hospital stay
We offer valuable information to help you plan for your child's upcoming hospital stay. Find out about food services, family accommodations and more.
Admissions & Discharge
To plan for your child's hospital stay, read about admission to and discharge from the hospital, and details to make your child as comfortable as possible.
Contact a Patient
You can contact your child or other patients by phone, message or postal mail during their hospital stay. Find out how.
You can stay with your child during their hospital stay, either in their room or at nearby short-term lodging such as hotels or the Ronald McDonald House.
Family-friendly amenities help you relax and take care of yourself while staying close to your child. We offer lounges, kitchens, showers, breastfeeding rooms and more.
We offer healthy, convenient options for food and beverages at our caf's, cafeterias, kiosks and vending machines at our facilities. Learn more.
Our gift shops offer a variety of gifts, such as flowers, plants, balloons, toys, books, candy and more, for children and families during a hospital stay.
Our hospital policies cover cell phone use, smoking, safety drills and more. Find the details you need to know before your visit.
Our patient rooms offer a cheerful, comfortable setting for rest and recovery during your child's stay, with amenities such as TVs, WiFi and sofa sleepers.
Patient Safety: How You Can Help
You can help the care team safeguard your child's well-being by asking questions, keeping track of medications and other steps for a safe experience.
Patient Transport: A Parent's Guide
Our transport service provides high-level care on the way to our hospitals. Find out what to expect and how you can help ensure a smooth transport.
Preparing Kids for a Hospital Stay
Preparing your child for a hospital stay or surgery can be challenging. Read our tips for making this process less stressful for you and your child.
Visiting Hours & Guidelines
The visiting hours at our hospitals include policies for critical care areas and flu season. Find out more.
Your Child's Care Team
Our doctors, nurses, child life specialists and other providers have special training to care for children. Meet your child's care team.
Your Child's Hospital Stay: What to Bring
A favorite pillow, toy, book or electronic device can help your child feel more comfortable while in the hospital. Find out what you can bring.
Your Child's Surgery: What to Expect
If your child is having surgery, there are many details about how to prepare, what to bring, and what to expect during and after surgery. Learn more.
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