Patient Rights & Responsibilities

As a patient at Grady, you have the right to…

  • health care services no matter your age, color, national origin, race, ethnicity, religion, culture, language, physical or mental disability, socioeconomic status, sex, sexual orientation and gender identity or expression, as well as source of payment for care.
  • be treated with respect and courtesy. We will protect your dignity.
  • privacy. The hospital, your doctor and others caring for you will protect your privacy as much as possible.
  • expect that treatment records are confidential unless you have given permission to release information or reporting as required or permitted by law.
  • respect for your religion, beliefs, and social needs. You may call the Chaplain at (404) 616-4270, Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. After 5 p.m. or on weekends and holidays, you may page (404) 703-1670. Our Chapel is on the 1st floor of the hospital.
  • clear communication from our staff. We will use the language you choose in a way in which you want to receive information. When you do not understand, please tell us or ask questions. If you want us to communicate with another person about your health information, tell us.
  • free services to help you talk with the staff. If you have vision, speech, or hearing problems, or if English is not your first language, our language interpreters can help.
  • talk to your doctor about your care.
  • know the names of the doctors responsible for your care.
  • know the name of each member of your healthcare team.
  • be told by your doctor about the unexpected outcomes of treatment and how effective it is.
  • understand your condition, progress, and all recommended tests and procedures.
  • decide with your doctor your plan of care.
  • involve your family or support person in decisions about your care. You, or a person you choose to make medical decisions for you, can say how much you want your family involved in your care.
  • have your decision-maker work with your care team, speak for you, and make health care decisions for you if you cannot communicate for yourself.
  • fill out a new or change an Advance Directive. The Directive tells your family and hospital your wishes for end-of-life care, including organ donation. The Directive also names a substitute decision-maker. This may be a family member, friend, support person or same-sex partner. The hospital staff will follow the instructions in the Directive.
  • receive care even if you do not have an Advance Directive.
  • agree to or refuse treatment. Your doctor will explain to you, in language you understand, risks, benefits, discomforts, side effects, and the purpose of the treatment. Your doctor will also talk to you about your other choices and their risks and benefits. You also have a right to know what may happen if you refuse treatment.
  • choose if you want to participate in research. You can also choose to be on photos or in videos (that are not used for your care).
  • not be secluded or restrained unless medically necessary.
  • have your pain checked and controlled.
  • have emotional support from a family member, support person or friend during your hospital visit.
  • have or refuse visitors, mail, or telephone calls during your stay.
  • view and get a copy of your medical record. Medical Records (Health Information Department) can be reached at (404) 616-4282.
  • keep your personal clothing and belongings. This includes hearing aids, glasses, canes, service animals, and wheelchairs. The hospital is not responsible for personal items. Please give jewelry, money, and other valuables to your family to take home.
  • a safe, secure environment, with no neglect, exploitation, verbal, mental, physical or sexual abuse. The hospital will report cases of abuse to the police or other agencies. If you feel your environment is not safe, you have a right to contact Protective Services.
Fulton County:  
Adult Abuse and Neglect (404) 657-5250 or (866) 552-4464
Child Abuse and Neglect (404) 699-4399
Office of Aging (404) 613-6000
DeKalb County:  
Child Abuse and Neglect (404) 370-5066
Senior Connection (770) 455-7602
Mental Health Resources:  
Georgia Crisis and Access Line (404) 730-1600 or (800) 715-4225
  • see your medical record. You may ask to make changes to it and ask how it will be used and shared. You may ask that all communication be kept private. You have a right to tell us if you think your personal information has been stolen or misused. If you have any questions, call the Compliance Department at (404) 616-1706 or (800) 349-4098 after hours.
  • see your bill and your payment options.
  • have follow-up care from Grady when you are discharged home or transferred to another hospital. If transferring, however, the receiving hospital or doctor must accept the transfer.
  • file a complaint or a grievance. If you have concerns about quality of care or service you received or other issues, you may complain in person, by phone, or in writing to the Department of Patient Family Experience, (404) 616-3500. We will review your complaint within 30 days. If the issue requires, we will send you a letter to explain how we handled your issue. The letter will say what was done, the date, and the phone number of a Grady contact person.

Grady expects you to do the following…

  • Give us correct and complete information about who you are, your health (past and current), insurance, and Advanced Directives.
  • Tell us about any cultural, ethnic, dietary, religious or spiritual beliefs/practices that may affect your care.
  • Tell your doctor and others on your care team about any changes in your health.
  • Work with your doctors and other staff on decisions about your care.
  • Understand that you do not have a right to get treatment you do not medically need.
  • Ask questions when you do not understand information about your care or what we expect you to do.
  • Remind our staff to wash his or her hands before and during any contact with you.
  • Make sure we use two ways to identify you (like your name and birthdate) before doing any procedure on you.
  • Follow your doctor’s treatment plan. Speak up if you think you cannot follow the plan.
  • Accept responsibility for what may happen if you don’t follow the treatment plan or you refuse treatment.
  • Keep your personal property safe during your stay; send your valuables home.
  • Follow the hospital’s patient conduct rules.
  • Respect hospital property and other people’s property.
  • Keep and be on time for appointments.
  • Keep your payment information up-to-date.
  • Pay for the care and treatment you get.
  • Show respect and consideration to the staff. Respect the rights of other patients and families. Grady will not allow any kind of violence (physical assault, threats, and verbal abuse).

Grady Patient’s Rights Definitions:

Family: Two or more persons who are related in any way biologically, legally or emotionally. Family includes any individual that plays a significant role in the patient’s life such as spouses, domestic partners, significant others, parents (of both different-sex and same-sex), and other individuals not legally related to the patient.

Surrogate decision maker: Someone appointed to make decisions on behalf of another. A surrogate decision-maker makes decisions when an individual is without decision-making capacity, or when an individual has given permission to the surrogate to make decisions. Such an individual is sometimes referred to as a legally responsible representative.

Support Person: An individual selected by the patient to provide emotional support, relieve stress, give comfort, and alleviate fear during the course of the patient’s hospital stay. The support person may or may not be the patient’s surrogate decision-maker or legally authorized representative.

Discrimination is Against the Law

Grady Health System (“Grady”) does not discriminate on the basis of age, race, ethnicity, religion, culture, language, physical or mental disability, socioeconomic status, sex, sexual orientation and gender identity or expression, as well as source of payment for care.  Nor Grady does not exclude people or treat them differently.

Grady provides free aids and services to people with disabilities to communicate effectively with us, such as access to qualified sign language interpreters and access to information written in other formats (large print, audio, accessible electronic formats, other formats).

We also provide free language services to people whose primary language is not English, either through qualified interpreters or information written in other languages.

Continue reading…

Patient Rights and Responsibilities
Patient/Family Visitation
Non-Discrimination Policy