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Ftag of the Week – F552 Right to be Informed/ Make Treatment Decisions

This week’s “Ftag of the Week” is F552 Right to be Informed/ Make Treatment Decisions, which outlines the resident’s right to be informed of as well as participate in his/her treatment decisions. Inclusion of the resident in care planning decisions and providing him/her with as much autonomy as possible is a major theme of the new RoPs, and this Ftag explains some of the relevant requirements.

  • Residents have the right to be fully informed of their total health status, including medical condition, in a language that they can understand. This means that communication is made in plain language where any medical/technical jargon is explained in a way that non-health professionals can understand.
  • Residents have the right to be informed in advance of the types of care to be provided and the type of caregiver that will be providing that care. This includes having a physician or other health professional respond to resident/representative concerns as well as when a change in treatment is being proposed.
  • Residents have the right to be informed in advance of the risks/benefits of proposed care and treatment options, as well as alternatives. Residents may choose the options that they prefer.

Remember that you have a major responsibility to keep residents and their representatives in the loop about their health status and care being provided, as well as giving the resident the option to choose those treatments in advance. Guidance for this regulation addresses use of interpreters for residents with limited command of the English language, providing qualified sign language interpreters or auxiliary aids if hearing is impaired.

As always, don’t forget the importance of documenting these informational discussions including the benefits and risks, options, and alternate treatments in the resident’s medical record.

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