Ephrata Community Hospital

Patient Rights

As a health care facility, we are committed to delivering quality medial care to you, our patient, and to making your stay as pleasant as possible. The following “Statement of Patient’s Rights,” endorsed by the administration and staff of this hospital, applies to all patients. In the event that you are unable to exercise these rights on your own behalf, then these rights are applicable to your designated/legal representative. It is our goal to provide medical care that is effective and considerate within our capacity, mission, and philosophy, applicable law and regulation. We offer these to you as a statement of our policy.

You have the right to safe, respectful care, given by competent personnel, which reflects consideration of your personal value and belief systems and which optimizes your comfort, safety and dignity.

You have the right to know what hospital rules and regulations apply to your conduct as a patient.

You have the right to expect emergency procedures to be implemented without unnecessary delay.

You have the right to good quality care and high professional standards that are continually maintained and reviewed.

You have the right to expect good management techniques implemented within the hospital, the avoidance of unnecessary delays, and when possible, the avoidance of personal discomfort through effective pain and symptom management.

You have the right to medical and nursing services without discrimination based upon race, color, religion, gender, sexual preference, age, disability, national origin, or source of payment.

You have the right, in collaboration with your physician, to make decisions involving your health care. This right applies to the family and/or guardian of neonates, children, and adolescents.

While this hospital recognizes your right to participate in your care and treatment to the fullest extent possible, there are circumstances under which you may be unable to do so. In these situations (e.g. if you have been found incompetent in accordance with law, are found by your physician to be medically incapable of understanding the proposed treatment or procedure, are unable to communicate your wishes regarding treatment, or are a minor) your rights are to be exercised, to the extent permitted by law, by your designated representative or other legally designated person.

You have the right to make decisions regarding the withholding of resuscitative services (CPR) or the foregoing or withdrawal of life-sustaining treatment within the limits of the law and the policies of this institution.

You have the right, upon request, to be given the name of your attending physician, the names of all other physicians or practitioners directly participating in your care, and the names and professional status of other health care personnel, including medical students, residents or other trainees, having direct contact with you.

You have the right under HIPAA—Health Insurance Portability & Accountability Act—to have security standards protecting the confidentiality and integrity of “individually identifiable health information” past, present or future. The hospital will provide “The Notice of Privacy Practices” which describes how medical information may be used and disclosed, and how you can access your medical information.

You have the right to every consideration of privacy concerning your medical care program. Case discussion, consultation, examination, and treatment are considered confidential and should be conducted discreetly, giving reasonable visual and auditory privacy when possible. This includes the right, if requested, to have someone present while a physical examination, treatment, or procedure is being performed, as long as he/she does not interfere with diagnostic procedures or treatments. You have the right to request a room transfer if another patient or visitor in the room is unreasonably disturbing you and another room equally suitable for your care needs is available.

You have the right to have all information, including records, pertaining to your medical care treated as confidential, except as otherwise provided by law or third-party contractual arrangements.

You have the right to have your medical records read only by individuals directly involved in monitoring the quality of your care, or by individuals authorized by law or regulation. The hospital shall provide you, or your designated/legal representative, upon request, access to all information contained in your medical records, unless access is specifically restricted by the attending physician for medical reasons.

The hospital must not frustrate legitimate efforts of individuals to gain access to their own medical records and must actively seek to meet these requests as quickly as its record keeping system permits.

You have the right to be communicated in a manner that is clear, concise, and understandable. If you do not speak English or are hearing impaired, you may request an interpreter or an auxiliary aid.

You have the right to full information in layman’s terms, concerning diagnosis, treatment, and prognosis, including information about alternative treatments and possible complications. When it is not medically advisable that such information be given to you, the information will be given on your behalf to your designated/legal representative.

Except for emergencies, the physician must obtain the necessary informed consent prior to the start of any procedure and/or treatment, or both.

You have the right not to be involved in any experimental, research, donor program, or educational activities unless you, or your designated/legal representative, have given informed consent prior to the actual participation in such a program. You, or your designated/legal representative may, at any time, refuse to continue in any such program to which informed consent has previously been given.

You have the right to accept or refuse participation for filming or recording made for purposes other than identification, diagnosis or treatment.

You have the right to accept and/or refuse medical care or to refuse any drugs, treatment, or procedure offered by the hospital, to the extent permitted by law, and a physician shall inform you of the medical consequences of such refusal.

You have the right to participate in the consideration of ethical issues surrounding your care, within the framework established by this organization to consider such issues.

You have the right to formulate an “advance directive,” or to appoint a surrogate to make health care decisions on your behalf. These decisions will be honored by this hospital and its health care professionals within the limits of the law and this organization’s mission, values and philosophy.

You are responsible for providing a copy of your “advance directive” to the hospital, if you have one.

You are not required to have or complete an “advance directive” in order to receive care and treatment in this facility.

You have the right to assistance in obtaining a consultation with another physician at your request and at your expense.

When this hospital cannot meet the request or need for care because of a conflict with our mission or philosophy or incapacity to meet your needs or request, you may be transferred to another facility when medically permissible. Such a transfer should be made only after you or your designated/legal representative have received complete information and explanation concerning the need for, and alternatives to, such a transfer. The transfer must be acceptable to the other institution.

You have the right to examine and receive a detailed explanation of your bill.

You have the right to full information and counseling on the availability of known financial resources for your health care.

You have the right to expect that the hospital will provide a mechanism whereby you are informed upon discharge of continuing health care requirements following discharge and the means for meeting them.

You cannot be denied the right of access to protective or advocacy services who are authorized to act on your behalf who might assert or protect the rights stated in this brochure.

If disabled, you have the right to expect reasonable and equal access to the facilities, services, and programs of this hospital.

Information regarding your rights as a patient should be provided to you during the admissions process or at the earliest possible appropriate moment during the course of your hospitalization.

You have the right, without retaliation, to voice complaints which will be reviewed, and, when possible, resolved.

You have the right to receive care in a safe setting and to be free from all forms of abuse and harassment including mental, physical, sexual, and verbal abuse, neglect and exploitation.

You have the right to access the hospital’s patient grievance resolution process by contacting the hospital’s Coordinator of Patient Affairs at 717-738-6585. You have the right to a copy of the hospital’s patient grievance process.

You have the right to be free from physical and medical restraints and/or seclusion of any form that are not medically necessary or are used as a means of coercion, discipline, convenience or retaliation by hospital staff. You have the right to a copy of the hospital’s policy regarding restraints.

The Patient’s Responsibilities

As a patient you will accept consequence and responsibility for the following:

The hospital expects that you or your designated/legal representative will provide accurate and complete information about present complaints, past illnesses, hospitalizations, medications, “advance directives,” and other matters relating to your health history or care in order for you to receive effective medical treatment.

You are responsible for reporting whether you clearly comprehend a contemplated course of action and what is expected of you.

The hospital expects that you will cooperate with all hospital personnel and ask questions if directions and/or procedures are not clearly understood. You are responsible for reporting perceived risks in your care and unexpected changes in your condition to hospital staff.

You are expected to be considerate of other patients and hospital personnel, to assist in the control of noise and visitors in your room, and to observe the smoking policy of the hospital. You are also expected to be respectful of the property of other persons and the property of the hospital.

To facilitate your care and the effort of the hospital personnel, you are expected to help the physicians, nurses, and allied medical personnel in their effort to care for you by following their instructions and medical orders.

Duly authorized members of your family or designated/legal representative are expected to be available to hospital personnel for review of your treatment in the event you are unable to properly communicate with your health care givers.

It is understood that you assume the financial responsibility of paying for all services rendered either through third-party payers (your insurance company) or by personally paying for any services that are not covered by your insurance.

It is expected that you will not take drugs that have not been prescribed by your attending physician and administered by hospital staff and that you will not complicate or endanger the healing process by consuming alcoholic beverages or toxic substances during your hospital stay.


Being a good patient does not mean being a silent one. If you have questions, problems, or unmet needs, please let us know. If you would like further clarification of the “Rights and Responsibilities” as they pertain to you, please contact: Joanna Rudisill, Coordinator of Patient Affairs at 717-738-6585.

You also have the option of contacting a government agency. They are as follows:

Behavioral Health issues:

Lancaster County Mental Health Administrator
150 N. Queen Street, Suite 300, Lancaster, PA 17603
(717) 299-8021

For other issues:

Pennsylvania Department of Health
Division of Acute & Ambulatory Care
Room 532, Health and Welfare Bldg.
7th & Forester St., Harrisburg, PA 17120
(800) 254-5164

Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations
1 Renaissance Blvd., Oakbrook Terrace, IL 60181
(630) 732-5000

Quality Insights of Pennsylvania
2601 Marketplace Street, Ste. 320
Harrisburg, PA 17110
(800) 322-1914

Published in cooperation with:

  • Hospital Association of Pennsylvania
  • Constituency Section for Health Care
  • Consumer Advocates
  • Joint Commission on Accreditation of Health Care Organizations
  • Health Care Finance Association