AWARENESS AMONG HOSPITALIZED PATIENTS OF THEIR RIGHTS: A CROSS SECTIONAL SURVEY FROM TERTIARY CARE HOSPITAL OF RAWALPINDI
Awareness Among Hospitalized Patients of Their Rights
Keywords:Confidentiality, Informed consent, Medical paternalism, Patient rights
Objective: To determine the level of awareness among patients admitted in hospitals about their rights to healthcare.
Study Design: Descriptive cross sectional study.
Place and Duration of Study: Study was conducted in medical and surgical wards of Military Hospital Rawalpindi, over six months duration from April to September 2015.
Material and Methods: In-patients, aged 12 -65 years who had been admitted for more than 48 hours were included in study. Well oriented and conscious patients were requested to choose single best option for each question in self-administered questionnaire. Awareness of patients of their rights was measured by adding up correct responses and was categorized into unsatisfactory, satisfactory and good. Data were entered and analyzed in SPSS version 20. Significant p-value was taken as <0.05.
Results: Among 140 respondents, 92 (65.7%) had overall unsatisfactory awareness of their rights, 41(29.3%) had satisfactory, and only 7(5%) had good level of awareness. Maximum awareness was about the right to informed consent (77.1%), followed by right of being treated with respect (37.9%). Awareness about right to decide about patient’s own treatment was the lowest (17.1%). The difference of level of awareness among males and females was statistically significant (p<0.001). The awareness levels differed significantly with educational status of respondents (p<0.001).
Conclusion: Majority of patients had overall unsatisfactory level of awareness. However, majority had good knowledge of right to informed consent but poor knowledge of right to decision making about their treatment.