Patient Rights and Responsibilities

Greater Regional Medical Center believes that the basic human rights of expression, decision, and action are very important. Greater Regional further believes that observance of these rights contributes to more effective patient care and greater satisfaction for the patient, physician and medical center. When providing care, Greater Regional Medical Center expects the behavior of its patients and their friends and relatives to be reasonable and responsible.

Patient Rights

As a patient, or parent or legal guardian of a patient, you have the right to: 

  • Be informed in writing of your rights before patient care is furnished or discontinued whenever possible.
  • Receive effective communication. When written information is provided, it is appropriate to your age, understanding, and language appropriate to the populations Greater Regional serves.
  • Have language interpreters available at no cost to you. If you have vision, speech, hearing, language, and/or cognitive impairments, the medical center will address those communication needs.
  • Be treated kindly and respectfully by all medical center personnel.
  • Receive complete and current information concerning your diagnosis, treatment and prognosis in terms you can understand. When it is not medically advisable to give such information, it should be made available to an appropriate person on your behalf.
  • To receive from your practitioner information necessary to give informed consent prior to the start of any procedure and/or treatment. Except in emergencies, such information for informed consent should include but not necessarily be limited to the specific procedure and/or treatment, the medically significant risks involved and the probably duration of incapacitation. Where the medically significant alternatives for care or treatment exist, the patient has the right to that information. The patient has the right to know who is responsible for authorizing and performing the procedures or treatment. 
  • Consults with a specialist of your choosing at your request and expense if a referral is not deemed medically necessary by your attending physician.
  • Be given an explanation of any proposed procedure or treatment. The explanation should include a description of the nature and purpose of the treatment or procedure; the known risks or serious side effects and treatment alternatives.
  • Know the name, identify and professional status of the physician or other practitioners providing care, services, and treatment to you at the time of service.
  • Know the name of the physician or other practitioner who is primarily responsible for your care, treatment, and services within 24 hours after admission.
  • Expect that a family member (or representative) and your own physician will be notified promptly or your admission to the medical center.
  • Participate in developing and implementing your plan of care.
  • Make informed decisions and be involved in resolving dilemmas about your care, treatment and services. With your permission and as appropriate by law, your family will be involved in care, treatment and service decisions.
  • Have a surrogate decision-maker, as allowed by law, identified when you cannot make decisions about your care, treatment and services.
  • Have an advanced directive, such as a living will, or a durable healthcare power of attorney and to have medical center staff and practitioners who provide care comply with these directives. These documents express your choices about your future care or name someone to make healthcare decisions if you are unable. If you have a written advanced directive, you should provide a copy to the medical center, your family, and your physician. You may review and revise your advanced directive. The existence or lack of an advanced directive does not determine your access to care, treatment and services. Refuse medical care, treatment, or services to the extent permitted by law and regulation and to be informed of the medical consequences of such refusal. When you are not legally responsible, your surrogate decision make, as allowed by law, has the right to refuse care, treatment, and services on your behalf.
  • Access to received treatment, care, and services within the capability and mission of Greater Regional Medical Center, in compliance with law and regulation and payment policies.
  • Request transfer of your care to another physician or facility.
  • Receive medical evaluation, service, and/or referral as indicated by the urgency of your situation. When medically permissible, you may be transferred to another facility only after having received complete information and explanation concerning the need for an alternative to, such a transfer. 
  • The facility to which you will be transferred must first accept the transfer. Be involved in decisions subject to internal or external review that results in denial of care, treatment, services, or payment based on your assessed medical needs.
  • Receive care and treatment that maintains your personal privacy and dignity. Discussions about your care, examination and treatment are confidential and should be conducted discreetly. You have the right to exclude those persons not directly involved in the care. If you desire to have private telephone conversations, you will have access to a private space and telephones appropriate to your needs.
  • Be treated in an environment that preserves dignity and supports your positive self-image.
  • Expect that all communications and clinical records pertaining to your care will be treated confidentially.
  • Access, request amendment to, and receive an accounting of disclosure regarding your health and clinical services information as permitted by law.
  • Access information contained in your medical records within a reasonable time frame (within 14 calendar days of your request).
  • Have your cultural, psychosocial, spiritual, and personal values, beliefs, and preferences respected.
  • Exercise cultural and spiritual beliefs that do not interfere with the well-being of others. Certain cultural and spiritual beliefs may nevertheless interfere with the planned course of your medical therapy. You may exercise your cultural and spiritual beliefs and take actions in accordance therein as are legally recognized and permissible in the State of Iowa.
  • Know if your care involves any experimental methods of treatment, and if so, you have the right to consent or refuse to participate which will not compromise your access to care, treatment and services.
  • Be informed by the practitioner of any continuing healthcare requirements following discharge.
  • Examine your bill and receive an explanation of the charges regardless of the source of payment for your care within a reasonable period of time following receipt of a request.
  • Be informed of the medical center rules and regulations applicable to your conduct as a patient.
  • Receive a response to any concerns regarding your care, either while you are a patient or after being discharged. You may freely voice complaints and recommend changes without being subject to coercion, discrimination, reprisal, or unreasonable interruption of care, treatment and services. * See complaint section below.
  • You may also use the Greater Regional complaint/grievance resolution process for submitting a formal written or verbal concern(s) to your caregivers, our Quality Improvement Department/Chief Quality Officer your healthcare practitioners, or Administration. If you submit a formal written or verbal complaint or grievance, it will be investigated. The telephone number for Chief Quality Officer/Quality Improvement is 641-782-3515. The telephone number for Administration is 641-782-3503. The mailing address for submitting a concern is: 

Greater Regional Medical Center Administration 1700 West Townline Street Creston, IA 50801

  • You will receive a written response to any formal grievance or complaint from Greater Regional Medical Center on average within 10 (ten) calendar days.
  • To submit complaints directly to our accrediting agency DNV GL-(Det Norske Veritas), patients, family members and other concerned parties should use the web form at Or you may submit a compliant about your care directly to DNV GL at phone 866-496-9647 or email or by mail to: 
ATTN: Hospital Compliant
DNV GL-Healthcare
400 Techno Center Drive, Suite 100
Milford, OH 45150
  • Medicare patients may also refer their concerns to Kepro, which is the Medicare quality improvement organization for Iowa. Kepro may be reached at 1-800-589-7337.
  • Be free from restraints or seclusion of any form that are not medically necessary or are used as a means of coercion, discipline, convenience or retaliation by staff.
  • Receive information about rights as a Medicare beneficiary at admission.
  • Receive care in a safe and secure setting for you and your personal property.
  • Be free from all forms of abuse, neglect, exploitation or harassment.
  • Receive appropriate assessment and management of pain.
  • Expect unrestricted access to communication. If visitors, mail, telephone calls, or other forms of communication are restricted as a component of your care, you will be included in any such decision.
  • Be informed of your health status.
  • Have the medical center support your right to access protective and advocacy services by providing a list of community resources.
  • Be informed about the outcomes of your care, treatment, and services including unanticipated outcomes that you must be knowledgeable about to participate in current and future decisions affecting your care, treatment and services.
  • Receive safe and effective care, treatment and services regardless of your ability to pay.
  • Expect quality care and the medical center will not discriminate or permit discrimination against any person or group of persons on the grounds of race, color, sex, national origin, age, religion, sexual orientation, gender identify, or other protected class in any manner prohibited by federal or state laws.
  • Be informed of your visitation rights, including any clinical restriction or limitation on such rights, when you are informed of your other rights under this section.
  • Be informed of the right, subject to your consent, to receive the visitors whom you designate, including, but not limited to, a spouse, a domestic partner (including a same sex domestic partner), another family member, or a friend, and your right to withdraw or deny such consent at any time.
  • Ensure that all visitors enjoy full and equal visitation privileges consistent with patient preferences, regardless of their race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation or disability.

Patient Responsibilities

As a patient, you have the responsibility:

  • To provide accurate and complete information about present complaints, past illnesses, hospitalizations, medications, and other matters relating to your health, including advanced directives, and reporting perceived risks in your care and unexpected changes in your condition and whether you clearly comprehend a contemplated course of action and what is expected.
  • To follow the treatment plan recommended by the practitioner primarily responsible for your care. This may include following the instructions of nurses and other healthcare professionals as they implement the practitioner's orders and enforce the applicable medical center rules and regulations.
  • For your actions if you refuse treatment or if you do not follow the practitioner's instructions.
  • To assure that the financial obligations of your care are fulfilled as promptly as possible.
  • To follow medical center rules and regulations affecting patient care and conduct.
  • To be considerate of the rights of other patients and medical center personnel, and for assisting in the control of noise, smoking and the number of visitors in your room.
  • To ask questions when you do not understand what you have been told about your care or what you are expected to do.

Safety Concerns

As a patient at Greater Regional Medical Center it is your right to report any concerns regarding your safety while at the hospital. You or your family members may report any safety concerns to the Patient Care Coordinator, the Safety Officer or the Chief Quality Officer. We welcome all comments from you regarding your safety.

Safety Rules for Patients

Infection Control

The best way to prevent the spread of infection is through good hand-washing. It is important for you to wash your hands before eating and after using the restroom. If your friends or family have been ill or have the flu, encourage them to call rather than visit you at the medical center to protect you and other patients from their illness. Some infections require special precautions. Please follow those precautions as instructed by the nurse to protect others from the infection. If you have any questions about the precautions, contact the infection control nurse.


Any medications brought from home should be returned to your home. Our Pharmacy Department will supply all of your in-patient medication needs. Information sheets advising you of possible side effects and the benefits of specific drugs are available. Our pharmacists are available to visit with our patients and their families if desired to discuss medication regimens.

Electrical Appliances

Any medications brought from home should be returned to your home. Our Pharmacy Department will supply all of your in-patient medication needs. Information sheets advising you of possible side effects and the benefits of specific drugs are available. Our pharmacists are available to visit with our patients and their families if desired to discuss medication regimens.

Wrist Bands

Your wrist identification band contains specific and vital information needed by all Greater Regional personnel to positively identify you when they administer tests, medications, and treatments. It must be worn at all times. Please notify the nurse if your wrist band is removed for any reason or if it becomes illegible or has errors.

Dentures, Eyeglasses, Contact Lenses, Hearing Aides

If you wear dentures, a special container will be provided for storage. When you remove your eyeglasses/contact lenses or hearing aides, please place them in the container specifically designed for them. Greater Regional takes every precaution to protect these items from loss or breakage, however, Greater Regional is not responsible for eyeglasses, contact lenses, hearing aides or dentures should loss or breakage occur.


Please follow your nurse's instructions for getting out of bed. You may experience weakness or lightheadedness due to your illness or treatment and your safety is important to us! The side rails attached to the bed are for your convenience and protection. If your nurse or physician believes it is necessary for the side rails to be raised, please call your nurse for assistance in getting in and out of bed.

Nurse Call Light

When you are an in-patient, please use the nurse call system whenever you are needing assistance. Pressing the call button will turn on a light at the nurse's station. Someone will come to assist you with your needs in a timely manner.

Warning Drills

Occasionally you may hear a series of bells or alarms in the medical center. Please remain calm as this is our way of checking our alarm systems. In the event of an actual fire, tornado, etc, our staff will inform you of necessary procedures that will be instituted and will come to your assistance.

Leaving Your Room

Please notify your nurse or the nursing station before leaving your room. It is also requested that you remain in your room until your physician has made rounds and treatments have been completed.