Legal Issues To Be Aware Of

Providence values the rights of our patients. You have a right to make decisions about your future and the future of your children or anyone for whom you serve as legal guardian. You also have a right to privacy.
 
Here are some general explanations of these rights. We recommend you seek legal counsel if you have detailed questions about any of these issues.
 
Advance directives are notarized documents, such as a living will or power of attorney, that provide directions for your care in the event that you are unable to speak for yourself.
 
A living will describes your desires for life support treatment in the event you have a terminal condition and are unable to participate in making decisions about your medical care.
 
A power of attorney gives decision-making authority over certain issues to someone you choose and may have a time limit specific to your hospital visit. If you have made either of these arrangements, we would like a copy on file in your chart. However, you are not required to make these decisions or to have these documents in order to have your procedure. It is your choice. If you decide you want to establish a living will or designate power of attorney, we can provide you with the proper forms and will notarize them free of charge the day of your procedure. The notary will require a photo I.D.
 
Legal Guardians
If you are the appointed legal guardian or caretaker for someone having a procedure, you must have a copy of the court order or other documents that permit you to sign consent for the procedure. You must bring these documents with you on the day of the procedure. A copy will be placed in the patient's chart.
 
Ward of the State, Court-Appointed Legal Guardians, & Guardian for the Day
All documents stating custody or guardianship of a child must be signed and copied along with the signed, informed consent form for the procedure. These documents must be placed in the patient's chart. If the guardian has legal authority to sign for medical procedures or treatment, copies of these documents must be added to the patient's chart before a procedure can be done. To avoid delays and confusion on the day of surgery, please have all documents signed and copied for the medical record.
 
Patient privacy is a top priority at Providence Alaska Medical Center. Everyone on our staff from physicians to payroll specialists is dedicated to protecting our patients' privacy. New federal privacy regulations provide hospitals and patients with an additional means to guarantee that patient privacy is a top priority for all providers, including hospitals, physicians and pharmacies. These regulations will be explained to you when you visit Admitting and will be confirmed when you visit other areas of the medical center to ensure your rights are safeguarded.
 
For more information
For more information about surgery services at Providence Alaska Medical Center, please call (907) 212-3681. To find general information and specific health topics, visit our online health library.