National Mental Health Information Center
Article location: http://www.mentalhealth.samhsa.gov/publications/allpubs/SMA-3504/yourhealth.asp


 


Recovering Your Mental Health
A Self-Help Guide

Your Health Care Rights

Your doctor or health care provider is doing a service, just like the person who installs your telephone or fixes your car. The only difference is they have experience and expertise in dealing with health issues. Your doctor or other health care provider should:

bulletlisten carefully to everything you say and answer your questions.
bulletbe hopeful and encouraging.
bulletplan your treatment based on what you want and need.
bulletteach you how to help yourself.
bulletknow about and be willing to try new or different ways of helping you feel better.
bulletbe willing to talk with other health care professionals, your family members, and friends, about your problems and what can be done about them, if you want them to.

In addition to the personal rights described earlier, your health care rights also include the right to-

bulletdecide for yourself which treatments are acceptable to you and which are not.
bulleta second opinion without being penalized.
bulletchange health care providers—although this right may be limited by some health care plans.
bullethave the person or people of your choice be with you when you are seeing your doctor or other health care provider.

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