Patient Rights & Responsibilities

Patient Rights

Wayne County Hospital is dedicated to providing quality, cost effective, health related services to meet personal needs and improve the health status of individuals and families in Wayne County and the surrounding service area. The patient is central to the Hospital and must be served with dignity regardless of race, religion, creed, sex, age, national origin, disability, veteran’s status, diagnosis or source of payment for care.
While a patient at Wayne County Hospital, you have the right to:

  • Preservation of individual dignity and protection of personal privacy in receipt of care.
  • Kind, considerate and respectful care.
  • Confidential handling of your personal and medical information.
  • Expect that Wayne County Hospital will give you appropriate and necessary care in a safe environment.
  • Information regarding your medical condition unless it is medically contraindicated.
  • Consult with a specialist at your request and expense.
  • Refuse medical treatment to the extent authorized by law and to be informed of the medical consequences of this action.
  • Receive spiritual counseling and to practice religious observances of your choice.
  • Ask to be transferred to another hospital.
  • Know the identity of the physician or practitioner that is primarily responsible for your care.
  • Know the identity and professional status of others that are providing care and/or services.
  • Effective management of pain.
  • Receive visitors from outside the facility, if it does not interfere with your care.
  • Ask for help in interpreting, seeing, or hearing words and instructions if you do not understand.
  • Receive materials and explanations about advance directives, such as a living will.
  • Know what hospital rules and regulations apply to your conduct as a patient.
  • Examine and receive an explanation of your bill.
  • A reasonable response to requests, with consideration given to the hospital’s capacity, its stated mission, and applicable laws.
  • Participate (including a representative) in discussion of ethical issues that may arise during your care.
  • If you become incapable of exercising these rights, then your guardian, next of kin, or designated representative is enabled to exercise these rights on your behalf.

If you have questions or concerns about Your Patient Rights, you may contact:
Hospital Patients: Chief Nursing Officer 641-872-2260 ext: 5228
Clinic Patients: Clinic Director 641-872-2063 ext: 5500

Patient Responsibilities

As a patient at Wayne County Hospital, you will be expected to take part in your care. We ask that you:

  • Tell us, to the best of your knowledge, about your health, past illness and/or injuries, other times you have stayed in hospitals, and medications you are using.
  • Ask questions if you do not understand what the doctor, nurse or other caregivers are asking you to do.
  • Follow all recommended treatment plans. Tell your doctor or nurse if you do not believe you can follow through with your treatment and take personal responsibility for any treatment you refuse.
  • Share information about your insurance and ability to pay for your care. You are obligated to fulfill your financial obligations as soon as possible following discharge.
  • Abide by the Wayne County Hospital rules and regulations that affect your care and conduct.
  • You, your family and visitors should be considerate of the rights of other patients, family, visitors and hospital personnel and respect the privacy and property of others while at Wayne County Hospital.
  • Report any changes in health to your doctor or nurse.
  • Smoke only in specially marked areas outside the hospital.
  • Take part in healthy behaviors that help you improve your health and stay well.

Your Rights and Protections Against Surprise Medical Bills

When you get emergency care or get treated by an out-of-network provider at an in-network hospital or ambulatory surgical center, you are protected from surprise billing or balance billing.

What is “balance billing” (sometimes called “surprise billing”)?

When you see a doctor or other health care provider, you may owe certain out-of-pocket costs, such as a copayment, coinsurance, and/or a deductible. You may have other costs or have to pay the entire bill if you see a provider or visit a health care facility that isn’t in your health plan’s network.
“Out-of-network” describes providers and facilities that haven’t signed a contract with your health plan. Out-of-network providers may be permitted to bill you for the difference between what your plan agreed to pay and the full amount charged for a service. This is called “balance billing.” This amount is likely more than in-network costs for the same service and might not count toward your annual out-of-pocket limit.

“Surprise billing” is an unexpected balance bill. This can happen when you can’t control who is involved in your care—like when you have an emergency or when you schedule a visit at an in-network facility but are unexpectedly treated by an out-of-network provider.

You are protected from balance billing for:

Emergency services
If you have an emergency medical condition and get emergency services from an out-of-network provider or facility, the most the provider or facility may bill you is your plan’s in-network cost-sharing amount (such as copayments and coinsurance). You can’t be balance billed for these emergency services. This includes services you may get after you’re in stable condition unless you give written consent and give up your protections not to be balanced billed for these post-stabilization services.

Certain services at an in-network hospital or ambulatory surgical center
When you get services from an in-network hospital or ambulatory surgical center, certain providers there may be out-of-network. In these cases, the most those providers may bill you is your plan’s in-network cost-sharing amount. This applies to emergency medicine, anesthesia, pathology, radiology, laboratory, neonatology, assistant surgeon, hospitalist, or intensivist services. These providers can’t balance bill you and may not ask you to give up your protections not to be balance billed. If you get other services at these in-network facilities, out-of-network providers can’t balance bill you, unless you give written consent and give up your protections.

You’re never required to give up your protections from balance billing. You also aren’t required to get care out-of-network. You can choose a provider or facility in your plan’s network.

When balance billing isn’t allowed, you also have the following protections:

  • • You are only responsible for paying your share of the cost (like the copayments, coinsurance, and deductibles that you would pay if the provider or facility was in-network). Your health plan will pay out-of-network providers and facilities directly.
  • • Your health plan generally must:
    1. Cover emergency services without requiring you to get approval for services in advance (prior authorization)
    2. Cover emergency services by out-of-network providers.
    3. Base what you owe the provider or facility (cost-sharing) on what it would pay an in-network provider or facility and show that amount in your explanation of benefits.
    4. Count any amount you pay for emergency services or out-of-network services toward your deductible and out-of-pocket limit.

If you believe you’ve been wrongly billed, you may contact the Wayne County Hospital Billing Department at 641-872-5293 or by visiting for more information about your rights under federal law.

If you wish to file a complaint with the federal government you may do so at or by calling 1-800-985-3059. You may also file a complaint with the Iowa Insurance Division at

For more information about your rights under federal law visit:

You have the right to receive a “Good Faith Estimate” explaining how much your medical care will cost

Under the law, health care providers need to give patients who don’t have insurance or who are not using insurance an estimate of the bill for medical items and services.

  • You have the right to receive a Good Faith Estimate for the total expected cost of any non-emergency items or services. This includes related costs like medical tests, prescription drugs, equipment, and hospital fees.
  • Make sure your health care provider gives you a Good Faith Estimate in writing at least 1 business day before your medical service or item. You can also ask your health care provider, and any other provider you choose, for a Good Faith Estimate before you schedule an item or service.
  • If you receive a bill that is at least $400 more than your Good Faith Estimate, you can dispute the bill.
  • Make sure to save a copy or picture of your Good Faith Estimate.

For questions or more information about your right to a Good Faith Estimate, visit or call 1-800-985-3059.