Information

Patient rights and responsibilities charter: easy read version

Easy read version of the revised charter of patient rights and responsibilities.


Part 2: Communication and involving you

There are 4 parts to 'The Charter of Patient Rights and Responsibilities'. This document is Part 2. There is a further information section at the end of each part. This has contact details and important information.

Introduction

A charter is a document that says what an organisation will do. It is an agreement between the organisation and the people who use its services.

In Scotland the law says there must be a charter for people who use the NHS in Scotland.

The law gives everyone the right to receive healthcare that:

  • meets their needs
  • does what is best for their health and wellbeing
  • gives them information and support to take part in decisions about their care.

It gives people the right to give feedback and comments or make complaints.

It says what I should expect when I use NHS services. It says what I can do if I think my rights have not been met.

The Charter says what I need to do when using the NHS. We want the NHS to use its resources in the fairest way.

Everyone who uses and provides NHS services has a right to be treated as an individual with dignity and respect.

The Charter is for everyone who uses NHS services in Scotland. NHS services are the services provided by health boards and include hospitals and services such as GPs, dentists, opticians, and pharmacists.

Some NHS services are now integrated. This means that decisions are made jointly by the Local Authority, the NHS and people from the community. Service users should be involved in developing health services. See further information.

My health, my rights, my NHS

Part 2: Communication and involving you

I have the right to be informed and be involved in decisions about my healthcare.

Communication and information

I have the right to ask questions about my care and treatment.

I have the right to good information and clear communication about my treatment and care. This should include the risks and benefits and if there are alternatives. This should be in a way I can understand.

I should be told the names of the NHS staff who are in charge of my care and how to contact them.

I can let my healthcare team know what matters to me and they should take this into account when discussing my treatment and care.

I should be given information in a way I understand. Staff should check I understand and if I would like more information.

I can ask NHS staff to explain anything I do not understand.

Communication support

If I have lost my voice or have difficulty speaking, I have the right to communication equipment and support to help me use it. See further information.

NHS staff can arrange support, such as an interpreter if I let them know beforehand.

I can ask NHS staff for a longer appointment.

I must let them know my needs before my appointment.

There are several organisations that can give communication support and interpreter services. See further information.

Making decisions

I have the right to be involved in decisions about my care and treatment. See further information.

I will be able to take part in discussions and decisions about my health and treatment. See further information.

I will be given time to make up my mind about any examination or treatment.

I understand that in emergencies, decisions may need to be made quickly.

I can ask for a second opinion before making a decision about my care and treatment.

I have the right to accept or refuse any care or treatment.

Support when making decisions

I have the right to ask for support when making decisions. I have the right to be given information about support and any follow-up care.

I can ask to have an independent advocate (representative) to help me give my views. I can ask to speak to a member of a spiritual care team. NHS staff can request this for me.

If I cannot make a decision for myself I must still get support to be involved in decisions about my care and treatment.

As a carer of an adult who cannot make decisions, the law says I can expect to be involved. See further information.

If I am under 16 I can make my own decisions if the health professional believes I can make decisions for myself. See further information.

Additional support if I have a mental disorder

Mental disorder is the legal phrase used to mean any mental illness, personality disorder or learning disability. See further information.

I have a right to support from an independent advocate (representative). My mental health officer can arrange this for me.

If I have difficulty making and keeping my appointments because of my mental disorder, I can ask NHS staff about help to support me.

If I need treatment under mental health law, I can choose someone (a 'named person') to help protect my interests. See further information.

When I am well enough I can make an advance statement explaining the care and treatment I would prefer if I become mentally unwell in the future. See further information.

If my mental disorder means I am a danger to myself or others, I might be detained or treated against my will. If this happens I have rights, including having these rights explained to me. See further information.

Managing my condition

I have the right to get support to manage my condition. I should be given information on how and when to take medicine, control pain, use equipment and access other services.

I will take responsibility for my own health and ask NHS staff for support to help me manage my condition and lead a healthy lifestyle.

I will discuss my care and treatment as openly and honestly as possible. I will tell NHS staff about any changes to my health condition or any medication I am taking that they might not know about.

NHS staff must make sure I have been given clear information about my condition in a way I can understand.

I have the right not to be apart from family for long periods when I receive treatment.

Taking part in designing and providing local services

I have a right to be involved in designing and developing health services in my area. My local NHS board should give service users and NHS staff the chance to be involved in making decisions.

My health board looks at health needs and decides the best way to meet this need. They must involve people when making these decisions.

I can contact my health board to find out how to get involved in the development of services.

Further information

NHS Inform

For information about NHS services in Scotland I can contact NHS inform. I can call the NHS inform helpline free on 0800 22 44 88 or go to their website at: www.nhsinform.scot

PASS

The Patient Advice and Support Service (PASS)

Provides support in giving feedback, comments, concerns or complaints about the NHS to help improve services. I can access the service by calling free on 0800 917 2127 or at my local citizens advice bureau or at www.patientadvicescotland.org.uk

Integration

I can find out more about health and social care integration on the Scottish Government Health and Social Care Integration website (www.gov.scot) and the Health and Social Care Scotland website (www.hscscotland.scot).

Health & social care standards

The Health and Social Care Standards say what people's health, social care and support should be like. I can get Easy Read information about the Standards from the Scottish Government website:
www.gov.scot

Communication support

'Guidance on the provision of Communication Equipment and Support in using that Equipment'

Guidance about communication equipment and support explains what is available and how to use it. I can find Easy Read information from the Scottish Government website at www.gov.scot.

Communication support

Interpretation services

If English is not my first or preferred language, I can use interpreting service by calling NHS inform free on 0800 22 44 88.

NHS 24 VRI Service

NHS 24 provide a video relay interpreting (VRI) service, which I can use if face-to-face interpreting is not possible.

contactSCOTLAND-BSL VRS Service

A video relay service (VRS) is available 24 hours a day through the contactSCOTLAND -BSL website (www.contactscotland-bsl.org).This is a video-call interpreting service for people who use British Sign Language who want to make appointments or receive information.

Making decisions

'Consent - it's your decision'

Leaflet with information on how to be involved in decisions about my health and treatment. To get a copy I can call the NHS inform helpline free on 0800 22 44 88
or go to their website: www.nhsinform.scot.

Making decisions

'It's okay to ask'

Leaflet with tips and advice on asking questions. To get a copy I can call the NHS inform helpline free on 0800 22 44 88 or go to their website: www.nhsinform.scot.

Support when making decisions

'Caring and consent'

Leaflet explains the rights of people who cannot consent to (give their permission for) medical treatment and the rights of their carers. To get a copy I can call the NHS inform helpline free on 0800 22 44 88 or go to their website: www.nhsinform.scot.

Support when making decisions

'Consent – your rights'

Leaflet explains how a young person under 16 should be involved in decisions about their healthcare and treatment. To get a copy I can call the NHS inform helpline free on 0800 22 44 88 or go to their website: www.nhsinform.scot.

Additional support if I have a mental disorder

The Mental Welfare Commission for Scotland (MWC)

Can give information about the rights of people with a mental illness, learning disability, dementia, or other mental disorder.

Phone: 0800 389 6809 (Freephone number for service users and carers)

Email: enquiries@mwcscot.org.uk

Website: www.mwcscot.org.uk.

Additional support if I have a mental disorder

'Mental health law in Scotland: guide to named persons'

If I need medical treatment under the Mental Health (Care and Treatment) (Scotland) Act 2003, I can choose someone (a 'named person') to help protect my interests. I can find out more about named persons in the 'Mental health law in Scotland: guide to named persons' guide on the Scottish Government website www.gov.scot.

Additional support if I have a mental disorder

Advance statement

I can find out more about making an advance statement from the Mental Welfare Commission for Scotland. I can contact them free on 0800 389 6809 or on their website: www.mwcscot.org.uk.

Additional support if I have a mental disorder

'Rights in Mind'

If my mental disorder means I am a danger to myself or others, I might be detained or treated against my will. If this happens I have rights, including having these rights explained to me. 'Rights in Mind' is a booklet that explains these rights. I can get a copy from the Mental Welfare Commission for Scotland by contacting them free on 0800 389 6809 or on their website: www.mwcscot.org.uk.

Contact

Email: lee.shennan@gov.scot

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