Your rights and obligations as a patient

As a patient you are entitled to good care. Good care requires mutual cooperation between you and your doctor or other care providers. Your rights and obligations are laid down by law. They include:

  • The right to information: before you undergo a test or treatment, you need to know what to expect and why it is necessary. What is the diagnosis? What is the right treatment, the right test for you, and what are the potential risks? Are other treatments or tests available? What follow-up care will be needed?

  • The right to decide whether or not you want to undergo a particular test or treatment: a test or treatment can be performed only with your consent. In order to say "yes" or "no" you must have sufficient information. If you have any questions, discuss them with your doctor. If you do not give consent, your doctor must respect your decision.

  • The right to a second opinion: you want to be sure that you are making the right choice, especially in case of a major procedure. If your own doctor is not able to help you make up your mind, you can discuss with him whether it would be useful to consult another doctor for a second opinion.

  • The right to inspect your patient file: all data related to your treatment are in your patient file. If you want to see this file, you can make an appointment with your doctor. You can request a copy of your patient file from the Medical Administration department of WZA.

  • The right to privacy: As a patient you should be able to assume that everything you discuss with your care provider remains confidential. Only the individuals who are involved in your treatment are allowed to inspect your data. Not even your partner or family are automatically entitled to information about your health condition.

As a patient you have obligations as well:

  • The obligation to be honest when providing information about your health
  • The obligation to cooperate with tests or treatments (for example by taking medications as instructed)
  • The obligation to take out basic health insurance.