Demented patients' rights in institutions--the relatives' point of view

S. Teeri, Maritta Anneli Vaelimaeki, J. Katajisto

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


The aim of this study was to describe the views of demented patients' relatives concerning the fulfillment of patients' rights in institutions. The Act on Patients' Rights and Status of March 1st, 1993, served as the basis for this study. Of the Act, the patients' rights to good care and treatment, to information and to self-determination were discussed. The data were collected from six medical wards for long-term patients at a hospital and from an old people's home by using a questionnaire. Ninety relatives of demented patients participated in the study, the response rate being 60%. The data were analyzed statistically. The relatives stated that the right to good care and treatment was realized best. The right to information was fulfilled quite well according to the respondents. The fact that the staff would not give information on their own initiative was regarded as lack of information. The right to self-determination was realized most poorly; 44% of the respondents could not say whether their relatives were able to affect the care with their opinions and wishes, and 59% could not answer whether the patient could reject the care. On the contrary, the respondents preferred their own right to influence decision-making concerning the care. Pensioners who answered the inquiry were more satisfied with the fulfillment of the patients' rights than others when the three rights were discussed. However, children as relatives were more dissatisfied than other relatives with the fulfillment of the right to information and self-determination.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)216-226
Number of pages11
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 1998

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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