It is the policy of University Hospital to honor, in accordance with law, each adult patient's right to make decisions regarding treatment, including the right to consent to, refuse or alter treatment plans and the right to formulate advance directives that will be honored if the patient becomes unable to make decisions. In compliance with state and federal laws, hospitals are required to provide this information to every patient who is admitted to the hospital.
Questions about medical care at the end of life are very important today because of the ability of medical technology to prolong life. The best way for you to be in control of your medical treatment in such a situation is to record your preferences in advance.
If you have an advance directive such as a living will and durable power of attorney for health care, a copy will be made and placed on your medical record. You do not need an advance directive to receive medical care; however, if you wish to obtain a form while you are hospitalized, please ask your nurse. Should you decide to sign the documents while hospitalized, you or your family is responsible for obtaining witnesses other than hospital employees to be present when you sign the forms.
It is the intent and desire of University Health Care System to resolve concerns and complaints utilizing the mechanisms of the Care Line and complaint processing procedure described in "Your Satisfaction/Compliments/ Concerns." Other avenues for registering concerns or for raising concerns that do not involve the hospital directly include the following:
Private insurance payment and hospital charge issues:
- Consumer Services Division, Office of the Insurance and Safety Fire Commissioner, 7th Floor, West Tower, Floyd Building, 2 Martin Luther King Jr. Drive, Atlanta, GA 30334.
- Concerns addressed to Medicare should be handled as described in "An Important Message from Medicare" or by calling the Georgia Medical Care Foundation at 800/979-7217.
- The Department of Health and Human Services Office for Civil Rights may be contacted at 800/368-1019.
- The Joint Commission (TJC) may be contacted at 630/792-5800.
- Issues involving nursing homes and residents or their families may be addressed to the Georgia Division of Aging Ombudsman at 888/454-5826.
In many instances, involving the patient's physician or the supervising hospital personnel will result in the quickest resolution of complaints or concerns. Or, you may call the Care Line at 706/774-2273 or hospital extension 4-2273.