Title: How-To Understand Your Rights as a Patient in India’s Hospitals
As a patient in India, it’s crucial to understand your rights when obtaining medical services. Awareness of these rights can help to ensure respectful and appropriate treatment, and may also protect against potential medical malfunctions or malpractices. This guide will provide step-by-step instructions to understand your patient’s rights in India.
The Indian Constitution has specific provisions related to health, like Article 21 which guarantees the right to life and personal liberty. Research these provisions to gain a comprehensive overview of your fundamental rights. Additionally, understand legislations like Indian Medical Council Act, Drugs and Cosmetics Act, and Clinical Establishment Act that directly deal with patient rights.
Step 2: Understand Your Rights Under the Indian Medical Council (Professional Conduct, Etiquettes, and Ethics) Regulations, 2002
This regulatory council lays down important patient rights such as the right to be treated with dignity, the right to know about the illness and treatment, the right to confidentiality, etc. Understanding these regulations will provide you robust knowledge about your rights.
Step 3: Go Through the Charter of Patients’ Rights from National Human Rights Commission
This charter enumerates 17 rights of patients, including right to emergency medical care, informed consent, second opinion, etc. Understanding these would be an essential step towards knowing your rights as a patient.
Step 4: Review the Hospital’s Policy
Every hospital may have slightly different policies related to patient’s rights and responsibilities. Hence, it’s wise to review your hospital’s policy booklet or ask them for information on patient’s rights.
Step 5: Be Aware of the Right to File Complaints
Know that if your rights as a patient are infringed upon, you have legal recourse. You can file complaints with the hospital administration, the local medical board, the local health department, or human rights commission.
Step 6: Consult a Lawyer If Necessary
If you believe your rights have been violated and you’re not getting satisfactory responses to your complaints, consider consulting a lawyer familiar with medical law. They can review your case and guide you on how to proceed.
Understanding your rights as a patient in India’s hospitals can play a pivotal role in receiving appropriate healthcare and safeguarding against potential medical malpractices. While the steps above provide necessary guidelines, they do not constitute legal advice. Always consult a professional if you need legal assistance.