Female chaperon necessary while examination of female patient by male doctor: PGIMER adopts updated charter
Chandigarh: Stressing on the requirement of the presence of a female chaperon during the physical examination of a female patient by a male practitioner, Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER), Chandigarh has recently adopted a new charter of patients' rights and has also specified patients' responsibilities towards the institution in it.
The institution has also included in the updated charter, the right to consult a second opinion from an appropriate clinician of their choice with all records and information to be provided to the patient by the treating doctor for the purpose.
As per communication by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India, all the healthcare establishments will have to display and follow the newly adopted charter, which will inform the patients about their rights and responsibilities at the same time.
The rights and the responsibilities of the patients as specified in the new charter by PGI Chandigarh reads;
Patients' Rights: A Patient and his/her representative has the following rights with respect to the clinical establishment
(i) To adequate relevant information about nature, cause of illness, proposed investigations, and care expected results of treatment, possible complications, and expected costs.
(ii) To information on the Rates charged for each type of service provided and facilities available. The clinical establishment shall display the same at a conspicuous place in the local as well as in the English language.
(iii) To access a copy of the case papers, patient records, investigation reports, and detailed bill (itemized).
(iv)To informed consent prior to specific tests/treatment (e.g. surgery, chemotherapy etc.).
(v)To seek a second opinion from an appropriate clinician of patients' choice, with records and information being provided by the treating hospital.
(vi)To confidentiality, human dignity, and privacy during treatment.
(vii)To have ensured presence of a female person, during the physical examination of a female patient by a male practitioner.
(viii)To non-discrimination about treatment and behavior on the basis of HIV status.
(ix)To choose alternative treatment if options are available.
(x)Release of the dead body of a patient cannot be denied for any reason by the hospitals.
(xi)It is recommended that patients seeking transfer to another hospital/discharge from a hospital will have the responsibility to 'settle the agreed-upon payment'.
(xii)It may be specified in the charter that no discrimination in treatment based upon his or his illness or conditions including HIV status or other health condition, religion ethnicity, gender (including transgender), age, sexual orientation, linguistic or geographical/social origins.
(xiii) Informed consent of the patient should be taken before digitization of medical records.
(i) Provide all health-related information.
(ii) Cooperate with doctors during the examination, treatment.
(iii) Follow all instructions.
(iv) Pay hospitals agreed on fees on time.
(v) Respect the dignity of doctors and other hospital staff.
(vi) Never resort to violence.
Meanwhile, speaking to Tribune India, the Deputy Director (Administration) of PGI, Gaurav Dhawan said, "We have updated the charter as we want to provide the best possible medical care timely to the needy and also make the patients aware about their rights. At the same time, we want to inform them about their responsibilities as well, which will enable the doctors to provide their patients with the right course of treatment."
As per the daily, the institute shall display the charter details at a conspicuous place in the local as well as in the English language.
Commenting about the new charter, Dr Jagat Ram, Director of PGIMER, told Hindustan Times, "It is about empowering patients in the ambit of ethics that the medical professional has to follow. They must have knowledge about the nature of the disease and the expected results of treatment. It is a patient's right to ask necessary and appropriate questions regarding illness and we are emphasizing it."