Virginia Commonwealth University

VCU Massey Cancer Center

Patient rights and responsibilities

Patients at VCU Massey Cancer Center are entitled to certain rights. We affirm the Patient Bill of Rights and Responsibilities, and expect all staff and patients to support and respect these principles.

Patients have the right to:

  • The best care available for their health needs within mission and capabilities of organization
  • Be treated with courtesy and respect  
  • Know their illness, condition and treatment 
  • Give or refuse permission for care, treatment or research 
  • Plan and participate in their care 
  • Be examined and treated in private 
  • Receive care supporting comfort and dignity 
  • Have communications and records concerning their care treated in a confidential manner 
  • Have their families and significant others treated respectfully 
  • Know the names and positions of the persons caring for them 
  • Make decisions by completing a living will, or by appointing a person to make health care decisions on their behalf 
  • Take part in talking about ethical issues that arise in their care 
  • Spiritual care and religious support consistent with personal beliefs 
  • Know how issues, complaints and grievances about their care are handled 
  • Care that respects their growth and development 
  • Effective assessment and management of pain 
  • An interpreter or assistive devices when they have a communication impairment, or do not speak or understand the language of the health care team 
  • Family involvement in decisions about organ, tissue and eye donation 
  • Leave the hospitals or outpatient clinical sites even if their physicians advise against it 
  • Ethical business practices

Patients have the responsibility to:

  • Provide members of the health care team with complete information about their health
  • Follow the agreed-upon treatment plan 
  • Make known their understanding of the treatment plans 
  • Express complaints or problems regarding their care 
  • Be respectful and considerate of other patients and staff
  • Take part in their care during their hospital stay, outpatient visits and at home 
  • Purchase supplies, medicines and other items for care after discharge 
  • Provide accurate and complete information for financial screening