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Poor Care - Hospitals

What to Do If You Have a Concern about Quality in a Maine Hospital

Advice and resources for dealing with quality concerns
Thousands of people become patients in one of Maine's 41 hospitals every year.  Some are treated in the emergency room.  Others come to the hospital to have a baby, have surgery, or get treatment when they're sick.  These hospital patients expect to receive quality care, and mostly they do.

There are times, however, when people have concerns about the quality of hospital care that they or their loved ones receive.  If this happens to you, this tip sheet can help.  It gives you:

Practical advice about what to do and who to talk with, including phone numbers and addresses
Links to resources that can help

This tip sheet explains steps you can take within the hospital to deal with your concerns about quality of care.  It tells you how to contact the places that regulate or oversee hospitals.  You can also consider filing a lawsuit, but that is not the focus of this tip sheet.  


Is it worth it to pursue a concern about quality?
For many of us, it's not easy to act on a concern about the quality of care we or loved ones receive.   The process can be stressful, frustrating and take a long time.  And in the end, it's possible that others may not agree with the way we see the situation. 

Is it worth the time and energy to take action on concerns about the quality of hospital care?  Only you or your loved one can decide.  In making the decision, think about the continued harm that might take place if you do nothing.  And think about how the actions you take might lead to better care for future patients.


What is quality of care?
Quality health care is doing the right thing, at the right time, in the right way, for the right person–and having the best possible results.

 

To find out more about what you can do if you think you've received poor quality care, this tip sheet can help.

This copy was prepared by Carol Cronin of the Informed Patient Institute through the generous support of the Maine Health Access Foundation 


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