Patient Rights and Responsibilities

We are pleased that you have selected Pacific Medical Centers (PacMed) to provide your health care. Our goal is to provide safe and effective care that meets your health-care objectives. In order to achieve this, we must work together.

PacMed affirms the rights of its patients to obtain health care delivered with consideration and respect for the individual, and to participate in decisions involving their care. PacMed also affirms the responsibilities of its patients to communicate adequately with PacMed staff regarding their health status, questions or concerns, and to meet their obligations to PacMed as specified in the section, “Patient Responsibilities.”

Patient Rights

PacMed patients have the right to:

Considerate, respectful medical care and services that are responsive to their needs.

PacMed patients have the right to considerate, respectful care at all times and under all circumstances, with recognition of their personal dignity, regardless of race, creed, sex, sexual preference, national origin, or physical or visual impairment.

PacMed patients can expect that staff will make every effort to respond to their requests for services, providing evaluation, services and/or referrals depending on the nature and urgency of their case.

Privacy and confidentiality of their medical record.

PacMed patients have the right, within the law, to privacy and confidentiality when receiving care, and thus, may expect that:

  • Individuals not directly involved in their care will not be present during examinations or interviews without the patient’s permission.
  • Any discussion or consultation involving their care will be conducted discreetly.
  • Their medical record will be read only by individuals directly involved in their treatment (or the monitoring of its quality), and by other individuals at the patient’s written authorization or that of the patient’s legal representative.
  • All communication and other records pertaining to their care, including the source of payment for treatment, will be treated as confidential.
  • Appropriate personal clothing and religious or other symbolic items may be worn, as long as they do not interfere with diagnostic procedures or treatment.
  • They will be interviewed and examined in surroundings designed to provide reasonable privacy. Patients may request a person of their own sex to be present during a physical examination, treatment or procedure performed by a health professional of the opposite sex. Patients need not remain disrobed any longer than required for accomplishing the medical purpose for disrobement.

Choose his or her own health care provider and have personal access to that provider.

PacMed patients will be encouraged to choose their primary care provider and to work with that provider as a partner in keeping themselves healthy.

Patients will be told the identity and professional status of those providing their health care and who is primarily responsible for their care. PacMed patients should have personal access to their provider to the extent possible.

Patients also have the right to know how certain medical training programs (e.g., medical residency programs) may affect their care and whether PacMed can provide the specific care needed if the patient does not wish health care professionals in training be involved in their care.

All information about their care.

PacMed patients have the right to all information contained in their medical record and to complete and current information about their care in understandable terms. This includes information about their condition, the outlook for their recovery (to the extent known) and recommended treatment.

Full disclosure of information is not always practical in an emergency situation, and in unusual cases, a physician may determine that full disclosure would cause harm; in this situation, a responsible family member or guardian will be informed, if possible.

Information about PacMed, its controlling authorities, its licensing and its relationships with other health care providers and organizations.

Obtain a second opinion with respect to their diagnosis and treatment.

PacMed patients have the right to obtain second opinions about their diagnosis and/or treatment from other health care professionals, recognizing that they may personally be responsible for the expense of these consultations.

Use of a language interpreter, if necessary.

PacMed patients who do not speak or understand English have the right to access an interpreter.

Participate in and consent to all decisions involving their medical care, including formulating advance directives.

PacMed patients have the right to participate in decisions involving their health care. PacMed providers will give a clear, concise explanation of the patient’s condition and of proposed treatment procedures, anticipated results, risk of mortality or serious side effects, significant alternatives to the proposed treatment and problems related to recuperation. Except in unusual circumstances, patients should not be subjected to any procedure without their consent or that of their legal representative. If a patient is unable to participate in such decisions, discussion will be held with family members or others responsible for the patient’s care.

Adult PacMed patients have the right to receive assistance in formulating advance directives (living will, durable powers of attorney or similar documents), which give direction about future medical care or designate another person (or persons) to make medical decisions if the patient should lose decision-making capacity. Patients have the right to involve their physicians in formulating advance directives and the right to know any circumstances in which advance directives cannot be implemented. (See Patient Self-Determination Policy, MEDSRVCS-9.)

Refusal of treatment.

PacMed patients may refuse treatment to the extent permitted by law. Patients can expect to be informed of the probable consequences of their decision if they refuse, and they may be asked to sign a release. Patients should be informed of other possible sources of care.

If a patient’s refusal of treatment prevents the provision of appropriate care in accordance with professional standards, the relationship between the patient and PacMed may be subject to termination.

Information regarding their transfer to another facility for treatment.

PacMed patients may not be transferred to another facility unless they have received a complete explanation of the need for the transfer and unless the transfer is acceptable to the other facility.

Patients have the right to be given clear and understandable instructions for receiving their care at home.

Information regarding the charges for services received.

Regardless of the source of payment for their care, PacMed patients have the right to request and receive an explanation of the charges for services rendered to them by PacMed.

Patients may request counseling from PacMed staff on obtaining financial assistance for services rendered.

Communicate with the appropriate PacMed staff in order to resolve a question or concern about PacMed or their care.

Refuse participation in research projects or procedures.

PacMed patients have the right to information on any special medical studies or research projects that may involve their health care and may always refuse to participate in such activity.

Access to the facility regardless of physical or visual impairment.

PacMed patients who are physically or visually impaired have the right to access all PacMed facilities and to receive assistance when needed to insure access. PacMed patients will be informed of any policies, which they are expected to follow, regarding: parking, smoking, valuables, visitors, noise, billing, etc.

Patient Responsibilities

PacMed patients must assume the responsibilities below in order to ensure that they receive the best possible care and service at PacMed.

Provision of information

PacMed patients should provide, to the best of their knowledge, accurate and complete information about present complaints, past illnesses, hospitalization, medications and other matters relating to their health. Patients are responsible for reporting unexpected changes in their condition to their provider.

Patients should make every effort to clarify whether they understand their medical treatment and what is expected of them, and to ask questions and state concerns.

Compliance with instructions

PacMed patients are responsible for following the recommended treatment plan. If unable to do so, they should consult their provider so that the problem can be resolved.


PacMed patients are responsible for keeping their appointments and for notifying PacMed at least 24 hours in advance when they will be unable to keep an appointment. Patients may be dismissed for repeated no shows.

Refusal of treatment

PacMed patients are responsible for the consequences if they refuse treatment or if they do not follow their provider’s instructions.

Financial charges

PacMed patients are responsible for meeting the financial obligations of their care as promptly as possible in accordance with their signed Financial Agreement and any payment arrangements made with PacMed. PacMed patients should seek financial counseling, if needed, to meet their payment obligations.

PacMed rules and regulations

PacMed patients are responsible for following PacMed rules and regulations affecting patient care and conduct.

Respect and consideration for other patients and staff

Patients at PacMed are responsible for being considerate and respectful of the rights and property of other patients and PacMed personnel.

For questions or comments, please contact our corporate office at 206-621-4466. Our hours of operation are 9:00am to 5:00pm Monday through Friday.