MoH drafts document on patients’ rights

The Minister of Health Dr. Richard Sezibera has said that the ministry is drafting a Patient Charter of Rights which will enable patients to understand their rights when receiving health services.
Dr Richard Sezibera.
Dr Richard Sezibera.

The Minister of Health Dr. Richard Sezibera has said that the ministry is drafting a Patient Charter of Rights which will enable patients to understand their rights when receiving health services.

“Patients have for a long time been complaining of getting bad services from some health workers, but we now drafting a document that will clearly show the patients what they are entitled to while at hospitals and health centres,” Sezibera said yesterday in a press conference.

He revealed that the draft will be out in January 2009 and will be a binding document between the patient and the medical practitioner and will help in eliminating any possible mistreatments to which patients have suffered for a long time.

Sezibera however, said that a regulation that protects the medical practitioners will be put alongside the patient rights charter to help reduce unnecessary suing of the practitioners by the patients.

“We are doing this in order to ensure that health services become more reliable and efficient for the better of Rwandans,” added Sezibera.

On top of the patient rights charter, customer care norms have been put in place to guide health workers on how to care for the patients who seek their services.

He added that the norms will be translated in Kinyarwanda to make sure that they are well understood by all the people and health activists will help in exposing them to the population.

Statistics show that the general health of Rwandans is improving, however, according to the ministry of health, a lot remains to be done to curb the numbers of mothers and children dying at birth and improving on voluntary testing for HIV/AIDS and family planning.

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