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(1)  Programs shall develop and implement written policies and procedures regarding the rights and responsibilities of patients and the handling  and resolution of complaints.  These policies and procedures must include a written notice of rights and responsibilities provided to each patient at orientation .  The required notice must contain the following items: 

(a) Right to humane treatment that affords reasonable protection from harm, exploitation and coercion; 

(b) Right to be free from physical  and verbal use;

(c)  Right to be informed about the individual treatment plan and to participate in the planning, as able;

(d)  Right to be promptly informed of any changes in the plan of treatment;

(e) Right to accept or refuse people; 

(f)  Right to confidentiality of patient's records;

(g) Right  to be informed  of the program's  complaint policy and procedures and the right to submit complaints  without fear of discrimination or retaliation  and to have them investigated by the program within a reasonable length of time;

(h)  Right to receive a written notice of the address and telephone number of the state licensing authority, i.e. the department, and the right to file a complaint  with the department;

(i)  Right to obtain a copy of the program's most recent completed report of licensing inspection from the program upon written request.  The program is not required to release a report until the program has had the opportunity to file a written plan of correction for the violations provided for in these rules; and

(j)  Right to an informal review and appeal of any involuntary discharge.

(2These policies and procedures shall also include provisions for patients and others to present complaints to the program, either orally or in writing, and to have their complaints addressed and resolved as appropriate in a timely manner.

(3)  The program shall provide services in a manner that respects the rights and responsibilities of patients.

(4)  The program shall post the name and phone number of the Complaint Intake Line for the Department of Human Resources and the most recent inspection report issued by the Department in an area visible to the patients.  

PATIENT SUPPORT                                                        

Rights and Responsibilities

1.  Treatment provided will be fair and impartial regardless of race, sex, age, source of payment, and conveys a sense of dignity and trust between program and patient.

2.  Treatment  will  be  provided  according  to  accepted  clinical  practice.

3.  Patients  will be fully informed, as  evidenced by a patient’s written acknow-ledgement, at  the time of admission and during  ongoing  treatment   (once the patient is stabilized), of their rights and responsibilities, and of all the  rules and regulations  governing  patient  conduct and responsibilities.  Such  rights   and responsibilities are posted at the treatment site and/or provided to the patient in writing and/or by tape  or  video  or  other electronic media as appropriate, and are reviewed with the patient following admission, at the end of the stabilization period, and then if any changes have occurred. Patients who are unable to read have   the   rules   and    regulations   explained  verbally,   and    such    actions documented   .

4.  Patients will receive adequate and humane services.

5.  Patients  will receive  services  within  the least  restrictive, and most accom-modating environment possible. Procedures are in place to ensurethe right to a medication  schedul e (dosing hours/schedule) which  is  most  accommodating, and least intrusive and disruptive for most patients..

6.  Patients will receive an individualized treatment plan, participate in the de-velopment  of  that  plan, receive  treatment based on the plan, and a periodic,
joint staff/patient review of the patient’s treatment plan.

7.  The program will  provide a n adequate number of competent, qualified, and experienced professional clinical staff to implement and supervise the treatment plan, consistent with patient needs.

8.  Patients  will  be  informed  about alternative medications, treatment alterna-tives, alternative modalities, and scientific advances affecting treatment.

9.  Patients  will  be  informed  about  potential  interactions  with  and  adverse reactions  to  other  substances,  including those reactions that might result from interactions  and  adverse  reactions  to  alcohol, other  prescribed  or  over-the- counter pharmacological agents, other medical procedures, and food.

10.  Patients will be encouraged and assisted throughout treatment to under-stand and exercise his/her rights as a patient, including:

     aReporting, without fear of retribution, any instances of suspected abuse, neglect, or exploitation of patients being served in the program.

     b. A grievance and appeal process, in accordance with State laws and regulations.

    c. Input into program policies and services through patient satisfaction surveys.

11.  Patients will be informed regarding the financial aspects of treatment, including the consequences of nonpayment of required fees.

12.  Patients  will be given an assessment, acceptance into the program or, in the  case  of  denial  of admission, a full explanation and a referral to another program based upon the results of the initial assessment.

13.  Programs  have  the responsibility to protect other patients, staff, and the public  from a patient who acts out. However, programs  also have a respons-ibility to determine the cause of that behavior so an appropriate referral to an alternative method of care can be made.

14.  Patients have the right to communicate with program staff in confidence and  to  hav e confidentiality  of  their  individually  identifiable  health  care information  protected.  Patients a lso have the right to review and copy their   own medical records and request amendments to their records.


1.  Patients have the right to treatment that:

     a. Is given with full informed consent.

      b. Is individualized and participatory.

     c. Responds adequately to patient needs.

     d. Promotes dignity and is humane.

     e. Promotes autonomy and patient responsibility.

      f. Protects confidentiality.

 .    g. Protects and promotes overall health and well being.

2.  Program administration obtains and is responsive to patient’s feedback concerning their care.

3.  Programs develop and implement policies and procedures to promote and protect patient’s rights as well as their health and well being.

4.  Programs must inform patients both verbally and in writing of clinic rules and regulations and patient rights and responsibilities.

5.  Programs establish procedures to cooperate in the medicating of traveling patients.

The  information  referenced  in  this poster  was  obtained  from  the  CSAT Guidelines for the Accreditation of Opioid Treatment Programs which can be found at

Advocates For the Integration of Recovery and Methadone (AFIRM)

National Alliance of Methadone Advocates (NAMA)

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)SAMHSA’s Center for Substance Abuse Treatment — Division of Pharmacologic Therapies

Compiled and Edited:  Deborah Shrira         Updated: January 2008

Updated: Dee Black/Asst. Editor                     Last Update: October 2011