Quarterly scientific journal

Patients’ rights

Elpiniki Biskanaki , George Charalambous


Health care constitutes a basic social right for all citizens and its protection is not only social, but also an individual right. Patients' rights are now guaranteed by legal texts of both international organizations and the Greek legislative framework. These refer to the dignified treatment of health care users, the elimination of discrimination, the right to informed consent and privacy, the right to respect for personal convictions and peculiarities, the protection of privacy, free choice and access to medical privacy. In our country there are various Institutions for the Protection of Patients' Rights, such as the Independent Patient Rights Protection Office and the Health and Social Solidarity Ombudsman, while in each Hospital there is provision for the establishment of a Commission for the Control of the Protection of Patients' Rights, a Citizens' Office for the Protection of Health Care Holder Rights. Although the rights of patients in our country are protected, it is increasingly obvious that the economic crisis, in an indirect way, is opposed to the principles of access, equality and the provision of high quality health services to patients. However, it is clear that the implementation of patients' rights is a duty of all those involved in the Health System, while the degree of their realisation is an indicator of the social level of any country.

Keywords: Patients’ Rights, Health, International conventions, Greek legal system

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