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Patient Rights & Responsibilities

Patient Rights

As a patient of UCLA Health, you have the right to:

  1. Considerate and respectful care, and to be made comfortable. You have the right to respect for your cultural, psychosocial, spiritual, and personal values, beliefs and preferences.
  2. Have a family member (or other representative of your choosing) and your own physician notified promptly of your admission to the hospital.
  3. Know the name of the licensed health care practitioner acting within the scope of his or her professional licensure who has primary responsibility for coordinating your care, and the names and professional relationships of physicians and nonphysicians who will see you.
  4. Receive information about your health status, diagnosis, prognosis, course of treatment, prospects for recovery and outcomes of care (including unanticipated outcomes) in terms you can understand. You have the right to effective communication and to participate in the development and implementation of your plan of care. You have the right to participate in ethical questions that arise in the course of your care, including issues of conflict resolution, withholding resuscitative services, and forgoing or withdrawing life-sustaining treatment, or to request an ETHICS consult by calling (310) 794-6219 or paging ID# 38442.
  5. Make decisions regarding medical care, and receive as much information about any proposed treatment or procedure as you may need in order to give informed consent or to refuse a course of treatment. Except in emergencies, this information shall include a description of the procedure or treatment, the medically significant risks involved, alternate courses of treatment or nontreatment and the risks involved in each, and the name of the person who will carry out the procedure or treatment.
  6. Request or refuse treatment, to the extent permitted by law. However, you do not have the right to demand inappropriate or medically unnecessary treatment or services. You have the right to leave the hospital even against the advice of members of the medical staff, to the extent permitted by law.
  7. Be advised if the hospital/licensed health care practitioner acting within the scope of his or her professional licensure proposes to engage in or perform human experimentation affecting your care or treatment. You have the right to refuse to participate in such research projects.
  8. Reasonable responses to any reasonable requests made for service.
  9. Appropriate assessment and management of your pain, information about pain, pain relief measures and to participate in pain management decisions. You may request or reject the use of any or all modalities to relieve pain, including opiate medication, if you suffer from severe chronic intractable pain. The doctor may refuse to prescribe the opiate medication, but if so, must inform you that there are physicians who specialize in the treatment of severe chronic pain with methods that include the use of opiates.
  10. Formulate advance directives. This includes designating a decision-maker if you become incapable of understanding a proposed treatment or become unable to communicate your wishes regarding care. Hospital staff and practitioners who provide care in the hospital shall comply with these directives. All patients' rights apply to the person who has legal responsibility to make decisions regarding medical care on your behalf.
  11. Have personal privacy respected. Case discussion, consultation, examination, and treatment are confidential and should be conducted discreetly. You have the right to be told the reason for the presence of any individual.  You have the right to have visitors leave prior to an examination and when treatment issues are being discussed. Privacy curtains will be used in semi-private rooms.
  12. Confidential treatment of all communications and records pertaining to your care and stay in the hospital. You will receive a separate "Notice of Privacy Practices" that explains your privacy rights in detail and how we may use and disclose your protected health information.
  13. Receive care in a safe setting, free from mental, physical, sexual or verbal abuse and neglect, exploitation or harassment. You have the right to access protective and advocacy services including notifying government agencies of neglect or abuse.
  14. Be free from restraints and seclusion of any form used as a means of coercion, discipline, convenience or retaliation by staff.
  15. Reasonable continuity of care and to know in advance the time and location of your appointments as well as the identity of the persons providing the care.
  16. Be informed by the physician, or delegate of the physician, of continuing health care requirements and options following discharge from the hospital. You have the right to be involved in the development and implementation of your discharge plan. Upon your request, a friend or family member may be provided this information also.
  17. Know which hospital rules and policies apply to your conduct while a patient.
  18. Designate visitors of your choosing, if you have decision-making capacity, whether or not the visitor is related by blood or marriage, unless:
    • No visitors are allowed.
    • The facility reasonably determines that the presence of a particular visitor would endanger the health or safety of a patient, a member of the health facility staff or other visitor to the health facility, or would significantly disrupt the operations of the facility.
    • You have told the health facility staff that you no longer want a particular person to visit.
    However, the health facility may establish reasonable restrictions upon visitation, including restrictions upon the hours of visitation and number of visitors. The health facility must inform you (or your support person, where appropriate) of your visitation rights, including any clinical restrictions or limitations. The health facility is not permitted to restrict, limit, or otherwise deny visitation privileges on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, or disability.
  19. Have your wishes considered, if you lack decision-making capacity, for the purposes of determining who may visit. The method of that consideration will comply with federal law and be disclosed in the hospital policy on visitation. At a minimum, the hospital shall include any persons living in your household and any support person pursuant to federal law.
  20. Examine and receive an explanation of the hospital's bill regardless of the source of payment.
  21. Exercise these rights without regard to sex, economic status, educational background, race, color, age, religion, ancestry, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, marital status, disability, or source of payment for care.
  22. File a grievance. If you want to file a grievance with UCLA Health, you may do so in writing, or by calling:
    • Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center
      Office of the Patient Experience (Inpatient/Ambulatory Care)
      (310) 267-9113
    • UCLA Medical Center, Santa Monica
      Office of the Patient Experience
      (424) 259-9120
    • Stewart & Lynda Resnick Neuropsychiatric Hospital At UCLA
      (310) 267-9092
    The grievance committee will review each grievance and provide you with a written response within 30 days. The written response will contain the name of a person to contact at the hospital, the steps taken to investigate the grievance, the results of the grievance process, and the date of completion of the grievance process. Concerns regarding quality of care or premature discharge will also be referred to the appropriate Utilization and Quality Control Peer Review Organization (PRO).
  23. File a complaint with the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) regardless of whether you use the hospital's grievance process, by calling (626) 569-3724 or (626) 269-3726 (Toll Free:(800) 228-1019) or writing to CDPH, Los Angeles District Office 3400 Aerojet Avenue, Suite 323, El Monte, CA 91731
  24. File a grievance with The Joint Commission (TJC) by faxing (630) 792-5636 or emailing complaint@jointcommission.org.
    You can also write to: Division of Accreditation Operations, Office of Quality Monitoring - Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations - One Renaissance Boulevard - Oakbrook Terrace, IL 60181.
  25. File a grievance regarding the conduct of a physician by calling the California Medical Board at (800) 633-2322 or writing to 2005 Evergreen Street, Suite 1200, Sacramento, CA 95815.


As a patient of UCLA Health, you have the following responsibilities:

  • To follow UCLA Health rules and regulations affecting patient care and conduct.
  • To be considerate of UCLA Health facilities and equipment and to use them in such a manner so as not to abuse them.
  • To respect the rights and property of other patients and UCLA Health personnel. Just as you want privacy, a quiet atmosphere and courteous treatment, so do other patients. You have the responsibility to follow the organization's rules and regulations, limit your visitors, follow smoking regulations, and use the telephone, television, and lights courteously so that you do not disturb others.
  • To report to your physician, and other health care professionals caring for you, accurate and complete information to the best of your knowledge about present complaints, past illness, hospitalizations, medications, unexpected changes in condition and other matters relating to your health. Also to provide a copy of your advance directive to be filed in your medical record, if applicable.
  • To be informed and ask questions by making an effort to understand your health care needs and by asking your health care provider for information relating to your care, or what you are expected to do. Your health care provider may not know when you're confused or uncertain, or just want more information. If you don't understand the medical words they use, ask for a simpler explanation.
  • To follow the treatment plan recommended by the health care provider responsible for your care. This includes following the instructions of the other health team members, such as nurses and physical therapists, as they carry out the coordinated plan of care. The organization makes every effort to adapt a plan specific to the needs and limitations of the patient. When such adaptations to the care, treatment, and service plan are not recommended, patients and their families are informed of the consequences of the care, treatment, and service alternatives and not following the proposed course. It is your responsibility to tell your health care provider whether or not you can and want to follow the treatment plan recommended for you. The most effective plan is the one which all participants agree is the best and which is carried out exactly.
  • To understand how to continue your care after you leave UCLA Health, including when and where to get further treatment and what you need to do at home to help with your treatment.
  • To accept the consequences of your own decisions and actions, if you choose to refuse treatment or not to comply with the care, treatment, and service plan given by your health care provider.
  • To keep appointments and cooperate with your health care provider. If you need to cancel an appointment, you should do so at least 24 hours before your appointment time.
  • To pay bills promptly to assure that your financial obligations for your health care are fulfilled. Late payments increase overall charges. You are responsible for working with your account representative to make payment arrangements and providing the information necessary to determine how your hospital bill will be paid.

If you have any questions regarding these Patient Responsibilities, please contact:

  • Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center
    Office of the Patient Experience (Inpatient/Ambulatory Care)
    (310) 267-9113
  • UCLA Medical Center, Santa Monica
    Office of the Patient Experience
    (424) 259-9120
  • Stewart & Lynda Resnick Neuropsychiatric Hospital At UCLA
    (310) 267-9092

These Patient Rights combine Title 22 and other California laws, The Joint Commission and Medicare Conditions of Participation requirements.