Patients Encouraged to Speak Up
Sept. 17, 2003
Jackson, Mich. — Allegiance Health supports a new program entitled “Speak Up,” developed the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO). Speak Up is a national initiative that urges patients to take an active role in helping prevent medical errors by becoming involved in their healthcare decisions.
To remind patients of their rights and responsibilities in the healthcare process, Speak Up encourages patients to:
- Speak up if you have questions or concerns, and if you don’t understand, ask again. It’s your body and you have a right to know.
- Pay attention to the care you are receiving. Make sure you’re getting the right treatments and medications by the right healthcare professionals. Don’t assume anything.
- Educate yourself about your diagnosis, the medical tests you are undergoing, and your treatment plan.
- Ask a trusted family member or friend to be your advocate.
- Know what medications you take and why you take them. Medication errors are the most common healthcare mistakes.
- Use a hospital, clinic, surgery center, or other type of healthcare organization that has undergone a rigorous on-site evaluation against established, state-of-the-art quality and safety standards, such as that provided by JCAHO.
- Participate in all decisions about your treatment. You are the center of the healthcare team.
If you have questions about the Speak Up program, contact the Patient Support Services Office at (517) 788-4800, ext. 4971.