Patient Rights & Responsibilities

Your Opinion Counts

We value your input in helping us provide the best care possible. Make sure to complete the HCAHPS survey you may receive in the mail. We use the results to improve our care, and reward our staff for excellent service.

If you have a concern or an idea of how we can improve our services, we ask that you let us know immediately. Please contact the Patient Representative at 989 894-3828, or ask to speak with a supervisor or manager.

If you are not satisfied with the response you receive, or would like to register a complaint with the State of Michigan, you may do so in one of the following ways:

  • Call the toll free Complaint Hotline at 800-882-6006
  • Complete a Health Facility Complaint Form (BHS-OPS-361)
  • Submit the BHS Online Complaint Form on internet at http://www.michigan.gov/dhs by clicking "Health Systems and Licensing," "Featured Services" (buttons in left hand column)

Submit a letter with the following information:

  • Complainant's name, address, and telephone number
  • Facility name and location
  • Patient name and location
  • Nature of complaint
  • Date of incident

Mail written complaints to:

Michigan Department of Community Health

Bureau of Health Systems
Complaint Investigation Unit
PO Box 30664
Lansing, MI 48909
FAX: 517-241-0093

Your Rights

1. You cannot be denied appropriate care on the basis of race, creed, religion, color, national origin, sex, age, handicap, marital status, sexual preference, or source of payment.

2. You are entitled to inspect, or receive for a reasonable fee, a copy of your medical record upon request. Another party shall not be given a copy of your medical record without your prior authorization.

3. You are entitled to confidential treatment of your personal and medical records, and you may refuse their release to any person outside the hospital except as required because of a transfer to another health care facility or as required by law or third party payment contract.

4. You are entitled to privacy, to the extent feasible, in treatment and in caring for your personal needs with consideration, respect, and full recognition of your dignity and individuality.

5. You may request a transfer to a different room if another patient or a visitor is unreasonably disturbing you, and if another equally suitable room is available.

6. You are entitled to receive adequate and appropriate care, information about your medical condition, outcomes of care, including unanticipated outcomes, proposed course of treatment, and prospects for recovery, in terms that you can understand, unless medically inappropriate as documented by the attending physician in the medical record.

7. If you are over age 18, you have the right to designate a "patient advocate" to make medical treatment decisions for you in the event that you are unable to participate in your own medical treatment decisions.

8. You may refuse treatment to the extent provided by law and you are entitled to be informed of the consequences of that refusal. If your refusal of treatment prevents McLaren Bay Region or our staff from providing appropriate care according to ethical and professional standards, your relationship with McLaren Bay Region may be terminated upon reasonable notice.

9. You are entitled to exercise your rights as a patient and as a citizen, and to this end you may present grievances or recommend changes in policies and services on behalf of yourself or others to our staff, to government officials, or to another person of your choice within or outside the hospital. You are allowed to present these recommendations or grievances free from restraint, interference, coercion, discrimination, or reprisal. You are entitled to information about McLaren Bay Region's policies and procedures for initiation, review, and resolution of patient complaints.

10. You are entitled to receive information concerning any experimental procedure proposed as part of your care, and you have the right to refuse to participate in the experiment without jeopardizing your continuing care.

11. You are entitled to receive and examine an explanation of your bill, regardless of the source of payment, and upon request you may receive information relating to financial assistance available through the facility.

12. You are entitled to know who is responsible for, and who is providing your direct care, and you may receive information concerning your continuing health needs and alternatives for meeting those needs, and you may be involved in your discharge planning, if appropriate.

13. You may associate and have private communications and consultations with your physician, attorney, or any other person of your choice; and you may send and receive personal mail unopened on the same day it is received at the hospital, unless your physician documents in the medical record that it is medically unwise to do so.  Your civil and religious liberties, including the right to independent personal decisions and the right to knowledge of available choices cannot be infringed, and McLaren Bay Region will encourage and assist in the fullest possible exercise of those rights. You may meet with and participate in the activities of social, religious, and community groups at your discretion, unless your physician documents in the medical record that it is medically unwise to do so.

14. You are entitled to be free from mental and physical abuse and from physical and chemical restraints, except those restraints authorized in writing by a physician for a specified and limited time, or as are necessitated by an emergency to protect you from injury to yourself and/or others. In this case, the restraint may only be applied by a qualified professional who must set forth in writing the circumstances requiring the use of restraints, and who shall promptly report the action to the attending physician. In case of a chemical restraint, a physician shall be consulted within 24 hours after the restraint has been initiated.

15. You are entitled to be free from performing services for McLaren Bay Region that are not included for therapeutic purposes in your plan of care.

16. You are entitled to information about McLaren Bay Region's rules and regulations affecting patient care and conduct.

17. You have the right to have your pain assessed and appropriately managed. You have the right to receive education related to your pain and pain control measures. You can expect that your requests for pain relief will receive rapid response, that your reports of pain will be taken seriously, and that the staff will use state of the art pain management techniques.

18. You may have access to protective services in this community.  Protective services in Bay County include the Department of Human Services and the Women's Center.  These organizations can be contacted by asking your caregiver or case manager/social worker to help. You may also contact these agencies directly at the numbers below.

Department of Human Services (Formerly FIA) - 989-895-2100
Children's Services - 989-895-2147
The Women's Center (For Victims of Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault) 800-834-2098; or 989-686-4551

The Ethics Advisory Group can be convened at any time to deal with urgent patient care issues.  Patients, families, nursing staff or physician may request an Ethics Advisory Review by contacting the nursing supervisor, Risk Management or Chairman of the Ethics Advisory Group.

Your Responsibilities

1. Follow the rules and regulations affecting patient care and conduct.

2. Provide a complete and accurate medical history.

3. Inform your caregivers if you have appointed a "patient advocate."

4. Let your caregivers know whether you completely understand your plan of care and what you are expected to do.

5. Follow the recommendations and advice prescribed by your physician. You are responsible for the outcomes if you do not follow the care, service, or treatment plan.

6. Provide any information about unexpected complications that arise in your treatment, and report any perceived risk in your care.

7. You are responsible for being considerate of the rights of other patients and hospital personnel and property.

8. You are responsible for providing McLaren Bay Region with accurate and timely information concerning your sources of payment and your ability to meet financial obligations.

If you feel that any of your rights as a patient have been denied, contact:

Michigan Department of Community Health
Bureau of Health Systems Division of Operations
Complaint Investigation Unit

P.O. Box 30664
Lansing, Michigan 48909
800-882-6006
bhsinfo@michigan.gov

The public may also contact the following organization with concerns about patient care and safety in the hospital that you feel the hospital has not addressed:

Joint Commission's Office of Quality Monitoring
800-994-6610
complaint@jointcommission.org