Take action to support transparency in hospital policies in Washington state. Send the letter below to the hospitals in your community. We encourage you to download and include a blank checklist with your letter. Please share the response you receive with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dear hospital administrator,
I am deeply concerned about the lack of transparency at your hospital. I appreciate the health care services that your hospital provides to my community, but knowing what services are available at the hospital is vital to accessing care.
Health consumers, including myself have a right to know what services are available at their local hospital. Hospitals have an obligation to their communities to provide this essential information. I urge you to fill out the checklist available at http://clearhealthwa.org/sites/default/files/Checklist.pdf and post it on your website, so that I and other members of the public will know what services are available at your hospital.
Providing accurate and up-to-date information regarding the services available at your hospital is a basic and simple service. However, I have reviewed the reproductive and end-of-life policies your hospital submitted to the Department of Health, and I still do not understand what services are or are not available there.
I should not have to read between the lines to understand what care I will be able to receive. Rather, this information should be clearly provided to me in an easily accessible manner. The burden should not be on me to decipher hospital policies. If I or a member of my family were facing a stressful, time-sensitive medical emergency, we certainly would not have time to attempt to analyze hospital policies. We would need to know clearly and quickly where we could get the medical services we required. Your current policies on reproductive and end-of-life care fall far short of providing this information.
Further, while I understand that the Department of Health requires hospital policies to be submitted on reproductive health care, end-of-life care, and nondiscrimination, it is also important that you provide information regarding the LGBT-related health services that you provide.
As a health consumer and local resident, I urge you to be responsive to the needs of your community by filling out the checklist. Posting this checklist on your website and submitting it to email@example.com will go a long way in increasing health care transparency. Patients deserve to know where to go when they need care.