Necessity of observing patient’s rights: a survey on the attitudes of patients, nurses and physicians


Studying the situation of observance of patients’ rights and interaction of those individuals who provide and/or receive health services are regarded as the most significant and salient parameters of qualitative evaluation of health services.

The main aim of this study is to compare the attitudes of patients as recipients of healthcare services with those of physicians and nurses as representatives of healthcare providers regarding the necessity of observance of various aspects of patients’ rights in three hospitals selected as representing the three models of providing medical service (teaching, private and public).

This was a cross-sectional descriptive analytical study and the data were gathered using a questionnaire. Researchers helped the patients to fill in the questionnaire through interviewing and the physicians and nurses filled in their own questionnaires.

The field consisted of three hospitals (a teaching general hospital, a private hospital and a public general one) all located in Tehran. The questionnaires included a set of general questions regarding demographic information and 21 questions about the necessity of observance of patients’ rights. They were filled in by the interviewer for 143 patients and, after being sent to other groups, 143 nurses (response rate = 61.3%) and 82 physicians (response rate = 27.5%) filled them in. The criterion for necessity of each right was measured according to the Likert Scale [from 0 (not necessary) to 10 (absolutely necessary]. The data were analyzed using SPSS 11.5 software. Given the abnormal distribution of the data, non-parametrical tests were used.

The results of this study showed that all of the study groups agreed with the necessity of almost all aspects of patients’ rights and the highest level of disagreement between groups was related to patients’ right of access to information and right of choosing provision provider and deciding on treatment plan. However, these disagreements were not significant altogether.

According to the results, it seems that healthcare providers, especially physicians, should be better familiarized with patients’ right of access to information and right of choosing and deciding. Based on the disagreement between the attitudes of the patients and physicians in this study, it seems that the patients had a higher level of expectations concerning their rights compared to physicians.

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Patients’ rights, Medical ethics, Patients’ rights charter.

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How to Cite
Parsapoor A, Mohammad K, Malek Afzali H, Ala’eddini F, Larijani B. Necessity of observing patient’s rights: a survey on the attitudes of patients, nurses and physicians. J Med Ethics Hist Med. 2012;5.