Patient & Visitor InformationContact Us
  • Your Rights and Responsibilities

  • For more information about patient rights, responsibilities and advance directives please visit Lifespan's ethics site.

    Rhode Island Hospital recognizes the rights of each of our patients. State laws have been established to ensure that your rights are respected. Below is an easy-to-understand interpretation of the law. It is also our promise to you.

    You have the right to:

    • Safe and respectful care
    • Privacy and confidentiality
    • Know the name of any physician or other provider involved in your care or treatment
    • Effective communication with your physician, including services of a qualified medical interpreter or translation services, at no cost to you
    • Participate in your care plan and make informed decisions, including the right to refuse care as permitted by law
    • Have your pain assessed regularly
    • The presence of someone you choose to give you emotional support, and visits from people you choose, unless it interferes with others’ care or your own
    • Respect for your cultural, personal, and religious values, beliefs and preferences
    • Treatment without discrimination based on age, color, culture, ethnicity, gender identity or expression, language, national origin, physical or mental disability, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, or source of payment
    • Give informed consent to participate in research as required by law
    • Freedom from neglect, harassment and abuse
    • Freedom from restraints and seclusion, unless necessary for safety
    • Examine and receive a copy of your medical records
    • Examine and receive a copy or explanation of your hospital bill
    • Examine hospital rules and regulations related to your treatment
    • Information about hospice care
    • Information about transfer to another facility if the need arises
    • Make complaints without being subject to reprisal or interruption of care
    • Request use of a television set

    You have the responsibility to:

    • Provide the hospital or your physician with information about past illnesses, hospitalizations, medications, allergies, and other matters relating to your health care
    • Inform us if you do not understand or will be unable to carry out medical instructions
    • Not take any drugs unless they are prescribed by your physician and administered by hospital staff
    • Support mutual consideration and respect by maintaining civil language and conduct in interactions with staff and licensed independent practitioners
    • Be considerate of other patients and their visitors, particularly with regard to adherence to the hospital’s no-smoking policy, noise and your visitors
    • Provide complete and sufficient information necessary for insurance processing of your bill
    • Assume the financial responsibility of paying for all services rendered, either through your insurance or by taking personal responsibility to pay for any services that are not covered by insurance
    • Keep all appointments and advise the hospital or physician when you are unable to keep an appointment
    • Let hospital personnel know if you have prepared an advance directive (“Durable Power of Attorney for Healthcare” and/or “Living Will”) and provide a copy to the hospital
    • Participate in the process of medical education of future healthcare professionals, as authorized by the hospital

    If you have a concern, or if you believe your rights have been violated, you may make a complaint through the hospital’s complaint procedure. Please call Patient Liaison Services at 401-444-5817, Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. After hours, please call the operator at 401-444-4000 and ask for the on-site administrator.

    You may also contact the Rhode Island Department of Health at 401-222-5200, or The Joint Commission (hospital accreditation) at 1-800-994-6610.