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Decree of 2014, approving the Declaration of individual's Rights and Responsibilities in the Euskadi (the Basque Country) health system


The patient or user of the Euskadi health system has the following rights related to the organisation and management of their health:

  • To be treated with respect and manners in a safe environment and with confidence in the professionals who take care of them.

  • To receive the information available about their health and any action regarding it, in an understandable and suitable way according to the circumstances and capacity of the patient, as well as, if applicable, having their rights not to receive information respected, if they so declare.

  • To all therapeutic intervention which is carried out with their free and voluntary consent, once true, understandable and suitable information is received about its purpose, nature, consequences, risks and existing alternative treatments, and to freely decide between the clinical options available, including not doing anything. 

  • Specifically, prior to giving birth, pregnant women have the right to be informed and to decide freely about the non-necessary interventions from a clinical viewpoint and whose omission does not imply a risk to their health or the unborn child’s health. 

  • To refuse treatment, even though this may harm their health or lead to death, except in cases specified by law.

  • To clinical safety with suitable risk detection and prevention mechanisms that involve health care.

  • In relation to births, the security mechanisms must guarantee the identification of new-borns.

  • In addition, new-borns will have the right to preventive programmes which are universally implemented in the Basque Autonomous Community (Metabolopathies-heel prick test, early detection of deafness, etc.).

  • For the different situations, conditions and needs of men and women to be considered, in accordance with the provisions of Law 4/2005, of 18th February, on the equality of men and women. 

  • For children’s circumstances to be considered when they are hospitalised in terms of the information provided, the consent and accompaniment of their fathers, mothers or family members.

  • To free and voluntary participation in biomedical research and in teaching practices, once suitable information is received about its nature, objectives, implications and risks. 

  • To express their ideas regarding the care and treatment of their health in an advance directive document, for compliance in situations where they are unable to express their desires personally.

  • To access and obtain the applicable healthcare services, in the legally established conditions, for the purpose of protecting, preserving or restore their state of health.

  • To have the information generated in the care processes which affect them registered in their medical record, with security measures that guarantee the confidentiality, authenticity, integrity and traceability of their personal information.

  • To have their intimacy and privacy respected in the care relationship, ensuring suitable spaces and means and the knowledge and respect of the professionals regarding the correct way to act in this respect. 

  • To receive information about the channels to use to formulate complaints, claims and suggestions, as well as for praising the staff who have provided the health care. 

  • To have the right to use any of the official languages of the Autonomous Community guaranteed in their relations with the health facilities, in the terms established in Law 6/2003, of 22nd December, on the Statute of consumers and users.


  • To collaborate in complying with the rules and instructions established in the health institutions.

  • To treat the staff, other patients and their visitors in the health institutions with utmost respect.

  • To look after the facilities and collaborate in the maintenance of the habitability of the health institutions.

  • To sign the voluntary discharge document in the case of not accepting treatment methods.

  • To make those in charge of the health institutions aware of any irregularities they observe in the working of the centres.

  • To carry the Individual Healthcare Card and National Identification Document when requiring health services.

  • To use the A&E services for the purpose of need, for what they were created for, preferably using the ordinary services where possible.

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