Baguio Patients Rights Act approved on second reading

>> Tuesday, January 3, 2017

By Gaby Keith

BAGUIO CITY – The proposed ordinance dubbed as the “Baguio Patients Rights Act of 2016” that declares the rights of patients and prescribes penalties for violations thereof, has passed second reading in the city council.
Incorporated into the measure were suggestions given during a public hearing conducted earlier by the local legislature’s committee on health and sanitation chaired by councilor Elaine Sembrano and attended by councilor Edgar Avila, the ordinance’s proponent and a member of her committee.
The proposed “Baguio Patients Rights Act of 2016” aims to equalize the contractual  relationship between a patient and his physician by stating the rights of patients necessary for the protection and promotion of their welfare.
The Act defines “patient” as a person who avails of health and medical care services or is otherwise the subject of such services.
These include the right to medical care and treatment, informed consent, privacy, information, privileged communication, choose his physician, self-determination, religious belief, medical records, leave, refuse participation in medical research, correspondence and receive visitors, express grievances, and right to be informed of his rights and obligations as patient.
“The observance of these rights and responsibilities will enhance the physician-patient relationship and lead to more effective patient care and greater satisfaction for the patient, the physician and health care delivery institutions and entities,” the proposed measure states.
It says “adherence to patient’s rights is a vital factor for the fulfillment of medicine’s primary purpose – the prevention and treatment of diseases and the maintenance of patients’ health”.
The measure proposes a penalty of P10,000 but not more than P50,000 for any individual found guilty of violating these rights and/or by fine and imprisonment at the discretion of the court.  Administrative sanctions, including the suspension or revocation of the violator’s license to practice his profession, shall be imposed in addition to the penalties provided.

If the punishable act or omission is committed by an association, partnership, corporation or any other institution, its managing directors, partners, president, general manager, or other persons responsible for the offense shall be liable for the penalties provided in the Act.


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