A patient is entitled to have another person present at the time he receives medical treatment, if he chooses so.
- The patient has the right to choose who the person will be, provided that he/she does not intervene in the provision of medical treatment.
- However, the treating staff may prevent another person from being present during the medical treatment if the staff member believes that the presence of the person may cause one of the following:
- Harm the health of the patient, companion or other patients;
- Harm the quality of the patient's medical care or the success of the treatment;
- Impair the possibility of receiving information from the patient that is required for medical treatment;
- Actually interfere with the treatment of the therapist or the attending staff;
- Harm the privacy of other patients in cases where it is not possible to prevent the injury by other reasonable means.
- In the cases mentioned above, when another person is not allowed to accompany the patient, the reasons why should be explained to the patient and the person should be brought back as quickly as possible after the medical treatment.
- In addition to having someone accompany him/her during medical treatment, a patient is also entitled to request that a relative, medical staff or other person be present during a medical examination.
Who is Eligible?
- Anyone who receives medical treatment is entitled to some to accompany then and is entitled to choose who that person is.
How to Claim It?
- The right is given automatically.
- If the patient wants the accompanying person to be a medical staff member, he or she must request it, but it is dependent on availability of the staff member and the general manpower at the time of the examination. If adding another staff member for examination is not possible, the attending doctor must explain to the patient the limitations resulting from the shortage of manpower and inform him of his right to be accompanied by any other person of his choice.
Presence of a Family Member During Doctor's Rounds
- The law does not establish the right of a family member to be present while doctors are performing their departmental rounds, and hospitals are not obligated to permit family members to be present at those times.
- In the event that a family member wishes to receive an explanation regarding the patient's condition, hospitals usually have procedures for requesting an appointment with a senior physician/department head during established reception hours.
- Patients receiving medical care through the Prison Services or Israeli Police frameworks are not entitled to have someone present during their treatment.
- If the patient is a minor, parents have the right to be present when a physical examination is performed on their child. For more information, see: Presence of a Family Member During Physical Examinations and Medical Treatment of Minors.
- During the physical examination of those who are minors, unconscious, helpless or mentally ill, a legal guardian of the patient or another medical staff member must be present.
- In an examination involving radiation, such as X-rays or cat-scans, people unnecessary for the test are not permitted to be present.
- The Mazor Clinical Center - Providing legal advice regarding patients rights in Israel
- The Society for Patients Rights in Israel
- Haverim L'Refuah (Friends for Health) - Assistance in finding and purchasing medications
- Physicians for Human Rights - Israel
- The Dolev Foundation for Medical Justice
- For a comprehensive list of health and illness aid organizations
Laws and Regulations
- The Patient's Rights Law - section 6a.
- Medical Administration Circular 40/2001 from 15.07.2001 - Physical examinations in privacy
- Medical Administration Circular 4/2004 from 18.02.2004 - Unaccompanied visits of minors at primary care clinics.
- Radiation - X-ray Safety Instructions from 03.06.2018 from the Ministry of Health.
English translation and maintenance by The Shira Pransky Project.