The hospital I work in used to have posters hanging up, describing patients’ rights. The right to have their medical care explained to them, the right to refuse treatment, the right to be treated courteously and the right emergency care regardless of the circumstances. These posters are no longer displayed, but the concept hasn’t gone […]

The hospital I work in used to have posters hanging up, describing patients’ rights. The right to have their medical care explained to them, the right to refuse treatment, the right to be treated courteously and the right emergency care regardless of the circumstances.
These posters are no longer displayed, but the concept hasn’t gone away. The health care team I work with makes every effort to treat people fairly and humanely. If a person refuses a test or treatment, that’s fine. If someone wants to leave against medical advice, they are free to go.
But health care professionals actually have very few rights. What other profession is not allowed to drink water while they do computer work, sip on coffee throughout the day or to have to work twelve hours without a break to eat? In what other profession is it part of the job to be cursed at, spit at and threatened?
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