Patient Rights and Responsibilities
in a Patient-Centered Medical Home

The Patient-Centered Medical Home model of care puts patients at the forefront. Medical Homes build better relationships between patients and their clinical care teams, improve quality and the patient experience, increase staff satisfaction and reduce health care costs. We are proud to be nationally recognized as a Patient-Centered Medical Home through Families First and Goodwin Community Health, with recognition of all practices expected in 2021.

A key part of the Patient-Centered Medical Home is providers and patients working together. To achieve this, we commit to respect the following Patient Rights. We ask our patients to partner with us by understanding their rights and fulfilling the Patient Responsibilities.

Patient Rights

Access

You have the right to …

  • have non-discriminatory, equal access to care regardless of your race, color, religion, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, national origin, or ability to pay.
  • have comfortable and reasonable access to patient areas.
  • have access to timely medical care through same-day appointments when the office is open.
  • have access to a medical provider on call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week (available through our main telephone numbers) and to information about urgent-care centers.
  • receive evidence-based care.
  • receive referrals to specialists and hospitals as needed.
  • receive disease-specific written educational materials to help you in self-management.

Privacy and Confidentiality

 You have the right to …

  • have your personal privacy respected by all staff members, including having privacy in treatment and in the care of your personal needs.
  • have no information about you shared outside of Greater Seacoast Community Health without your written consent, except when staff suspect there is abuse, neglect or exploitation of a child or incapacitated adult, or when staff suspect that the patient is a threat to harm self or others. Our staff is mandated by law to report in these situations.

More information about patient privacy is available in our Patients Notice of Privacy, which is available upon request from office staff and also at www.GetCommunityHealth.org/Patient-Info.   

Involvement and Consent in Your Care

You have the right to …

  • choose a Primary Care Provider when you become our patient. (If you do not choose one, one will be chosen for you.) If at any time you would like to change your Primary Care Provider, you may notify any Health Center staff member.
  • receive the information you need to participate in decisions about your care. Information will be presented in terms that are clear, understandable and take into account your primary language, any physical limitations and your level of comprehension. This would include information about your diagnosis and prognosis; any diagnostic or therapeutic procedures, treatments or medications that your health care provider is recommending; and the risks involved, how long it may take you to recuperate, and the medically reasonable alternatives and their accompanying risks and benefits.
  • obtain complete and current information regarding your diagnosis, treatment, and prognosis to the degree known by the practitioners responsible for your care.
  • give informed consent before we begin any treatment or procedure, except if the need for treatment is urgent and you lack decision-making capacity.
  • review and receive a copy of any medical records created and maintained by this practice regarding your care and treatment.
  • be told the names and positions of people involved in your care by official nametag and/or personal introduction.
  • obtain another medical opinion before any procedure.
  • have your questions and concerns listened to, and receive an appropriate response.

 Respect and Dignity

 You have the right to …

  • be treated with consideration and respect at all times.
  • have your dignity, individuality and cultural and/or spiritual needs recognized and respected.

Payment and Billing

You have the right to …

  • apply for a sliding-fee discount, based on income and household size, if you do not have health insurance.
  • request and receive a copy of our fee schedule.
  • ask for and receive an explanation of any charges made by this practice, even if they are covered by insurance.

More information about patient privacy is available in our Financial Policy, which is available upon request from office staff and also at www.GetCommunityHealth.org/Patient-Info.   

 Expressing Concerns

 You have the right to …

  • express any concerns, complaints or comments regarding your experience at this practice to a practice manager or clinical manager. This may be done in person, over the phone or in writing.
  • have concerns, complaints and comments reviewed by an appropriate staff member, and be informed in a timely way how the issue has been resolved.
  • contact our CEO, Janet Laatsch, with any concerns that could not be resolved in other ways, at (603) 422-8208 x3120.
  • contact the Office of the Ombudsman at the NH Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). This office responds to complaints and requests for assistance to resolve disagreements in matters that involve DHHS, including issues involving services provided by organizations such as Greater Seacoast Community Health that have contracts with DHHS. More info is at dhhs.nh.gov/oos/ombudsman/. You can reach this office at 129 Pleasant Street, Concord, NH, 03301 or Ombudsman@dhhs.nh.gov or (603) 271-6941 or (800) 852-3345 ext. 6941. For TDD Access Relay, dial (800) 735-2964.

Patient Responsibilities

Some patient responsibilities are outlined in the Mutual Respect and the Financial Policies documents. hese are available at GetCommunityHealth.org/Patient-Info or upon request from Health Center staff. In addition, we ask patients to fulfill these responsibilities:

Mutual Respect

 Patients are asked to …

  • show respect for other patients
  • show respect for our staff and be considerate in communications, whether in writing, in person or on the phone.

Health Care

 Patients are asked to …

  • take an active role in your care. Discuss and be involved in your treatment plan with your provider. Ask questions if you do not understand the explanation of your diagnosis, treatment, prognosis, or any instructions.
  • give a detailed and honest health history, including information about your current health, your past health, and behaviors that impact your health, such as nutrition, physical activity, and use of alcohol, tobacco and other drugs.
  • follow the treatment plan agreed upon with your provider, including taking all prescribed medications as directed, and give information about any over-the-counter or herbal medications you are taking.
  • update your health team on changes in your health at each visit, and provide information needed to complete your health record.

Outside Health Services

 Patients are asked to …

  • avoid using the Emergency Room in non-emergency situations. Call our main number anytime, day or night. If we are closed, you will hear instructions on how to speak with a nurse.
  • bring discharge papers from Emergency Room or Urgent Care visits to your next visit to us.
  • inform your provider of any medical visits, treatment or tests you have had with an outside provider if our practice did not refer you for these. Bring documents when available.

 Appointments and Requests

 You have the responsibility to …

  • keep all scheduled appointments with your provider and other specialist(s) if at all possible.
  • call us immediately if you know you cannot keep an appointment or will be late so we can give your appointment time to another patient who needs to be seen.
  • be on time for all scheduled appointments. If you are late, be prepared to wait for next available appointment or to reschedule.
  • request medication refills at least two business days before you run out, by calling the Medication Refill line, using the Patient Portal or using a pharmacy app.

 Other Responsibilities

You have the responsibility to …

  • keep track of your personal possessions during your visit.

If you have concerns about these expectations, please speak to our practice manager. If you cannot meet these expectations, we will work with you to find a solution. In rare cases where no solution can be found, we may refer you to another medical practice for your care. We look forward to a caring relationship that maximizes your good health.