Patients' Rights

Ministry Saint Joseph's Hospital is committed to providing the finest health care available. This includes respecting the basic rights and personal dignity of all patients without distinction or discrimination. The rights and responsibilities of patients outlined in this statement are considered reasonable. If the patient is a minor or incapacitated, the rights and responsibilities will apply to the parent, guardian, next of kin, or designated legal representative who will act on behalf of the patient.

Your medical information has been incorporated into a computerized medical record. This private, computerized record system is only accessible by staff from Ministry Saint Joseph's Hospital, the Marshfield Clinic system, and other authorized providers. It gives staff the ability to immediately access your health information in order to provide you with comprehensive medical care.

Notice of Privacy Practices

Ministry Saint Joseph's Hospital is committed to protecting the privacy of our patients. We strongly support both state and federal regulations that protect your privacy and afford you certain privacy rights. Ministry Saint Joseph's Hospital has developed a "Notice of Privacy Practices" which provides information on your privacy rights as well as the Hospital's privacy practices.

Access to Care

You will receive appropriate treatment and services regardless of race, creed, color, national origin, ancestry, religion, gender, sexual orientation, marital status, age, newborn status, handicap, or source of payment.

Considerate Care

You will receive considerate, respectful care from qualified personnel who respect your personal values, belief system, and culture. You have the right to be free from all forms of abuse or harassment.


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.

Notification of Admission

You have the right to have a family member or a representative of your choice and your own physician notified promptly of your admission to the Hospital.

Identity of Physicians and Staff

You will be told the name of the physician who has primary responsibility for coordinating your care and the names and professional relationship of other physicians and staff who provide care and treatment.


Information pertaining to your medical records, diagnosis, care and method of payment will be kept confidential. This information will not be released to other parties without your written consent, unless required by law.


You have the right to obtain current information from the physician responsible for coordinating your care. Such information includes your diagnosis, treatment options and prognosis, communicated in language you can reasonably be expected to understand. It also includes information on the outcomes of care, including unanticipated outcomes. In an emergency, if you should lack the capability to make decisions, the information will be made available to a legally authorized individual. You have the right to information in your medical record as outlined in the Hospital policy.

Health Care Decision Making

You have the right to be given the information necessary to allow you to actively participate in the development and implementation of your plan of care. You have the right to participate in the ethical questions that arise in the course of your care, including issues of conflict resolution, withholding resuscitative services, and forgoing or withdrawal of life sustaining treatment. You also have the right to request a change to another physician or to transfer to another health care facility for religious or other reasons.


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

Consult Another Physician

You have the right to request a specialist or 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. You have the right to designate who is and is not permitted to visit during your stay. 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 an explanation of risks involved, probability of success and alternative treatments that may be available. Except in emergencies, your consent or the consent of your legally authorized representative will be obtained before treatment is administered.


Except in emergencies, you may not be transferred to another facility or organization unless you or your representative have agreed to the transfer and 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.

Personal Safety

Medical and Hospital staff will do everything possible to ensure your safety while in the medical complex. Staff will also help you access protective services if necessary.

Refusal of Treatment

You may accept, limit, discontinue, or 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.

Continuity of 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.

Explanation of Hospital Charges

You have the right to be informed about Hospital charges for services and available payment methods. You will be permitted to examine your Hospital bill and receive an explanation of the bill, regardless of source of payment. Upon request, you will also receive information relating to financial assistance available through the Hospital.

Pain Management

You have the right to appropriate assessment and management of pain. As a patient, you can expect information about pain management and pain relief measures; a concerned staff committed to pain prevention; health professionals who respond quickly to reports of pain; and state-of-the-art pain management.

Advance Directive

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

Restraints and Seclusion

You have the right to be free from physical or chemical restraints or seclusion of any form, imposed as a means of coercion, discipline, convenience, or retaliation by staff. In emergency situations, medications or restraints may be necessary to prevent serious physical harm to yourself or others.

Pastoral Care and Spiritual Services

The Hospital will provide pastoral care and other spiritual services to all patients who request them.

Interpreters and Translators

Patients have a legal right to access interpreter services. Interpreters are available to interpret or translate in several languages, including sign language. Please notify your nurse if you need assistance.

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