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Client Rights

All clients have the right to:

  • Treatment in accordance with the Florida Mental Health Act.

  • Treatment by staff with respect.

  •   Freedom from abuse, financial or other exploitation, retaliation, humiliation, or neglect. 

  •  Treatment without regard to sex, gender expression, sexual orientation, race, color, national origin, religion, spiritual beliefs, handicaps, language or economic status.

  • Reasonable accommodations under the Americans with Disabilities Act.

  • Treatment that is timely, ethical, suited to individual needs; promotes dignity, independence, self-esteem, and quality of life.

  •  The least restrictive treatment environment consistent with their needs.

  • Assignment of a primary provider.

  • Participation in treatment and discharge planning, as well as review of the treatment plan prior to treatment.

  • Access to information pertinent to the client in sufficient time to assist his or her decision making.

  • Informed consent, refusal, or expression of choice regarding: service delivery; release of information; concurrent services; composition of the service delivery team; unusual or high risk medication, if applicable;  involvement in research projects, if applicable; or video or audio taping or photography, if applicable.

  • The following information:

   o    Explanation of the purpose of treatment to be provided and an estimated length of service.

   o    Explanation of medication that is prescribed by Child Guidance Center medical staff, including side effects and possible results of long term use.

  • Confidentiality as outlined in the “Notice of Privacy Practices”.

  • Accessibility of their clinical record as outlined in the “Notice of Privacy Practices”.

  • Reasonable privacy consistent with the need for safety.

  • Access or referral to legal entities for appropriate representation, self-help support services, and/or advocacy services.

  • Other legal rights.

  • Adherence to research guidelines and ethics when clients are involved, if applicable.

  • An orientation to the rights and responsibilities of the client and the clients’ family.   

In addition, all clients have the right to:

  • File a grievance, including perceived violation of client rights, dissatisfaction with treatment, or discrimination complaint; appeal denial or exclusion from a program or failure to take into account the client’s choice of service report alleged abuse.

  • Investigation and resolution of grievances/conflict in care decisions without retaliation or loss of service.

Clients may file grievances through the following methods:

  • Clients are provided access to a phone at any time to contact the Florida Abuse Hotline.

  • Client Grievance Forms and pre-addressed envelopes are available in our waiting rooms or from individual providers. Completed Client Grievance Forms are processed by the Quality Assurance Director.

  • Clients/families wishing to talk to staff directly may contact the Program Director, Beth Oberlander, LCSW, Quality Assurance Director, at 904-448-4700x241, or Theresa Rulien, Ph.D., President/CEO at 904-448-4700x110.  Discrimination complaints may be directed to Nikki Deese, Human Resources and QA Administrator /Title VI Coordinator, at 904-448-4700x205.

  • Clients may also contact the below agencies regarding rights as well as other concerns:

Legal Rights: Legal Aid 904-232-2090

Florida Abuse Hotline       800-962-2873      Florida Relay 711                               TTY 800-453-5145

Discrimination Complaints

Department of Children and Families, Office of Civil Rights
1317 Winewood Blvd., Bldg 1, Rm 110
Tallahassee, FL 32399-0700

850-487-1901      TDD:  850-922-9220

U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services, Office of Civil Rights
Sam Nunn Atlanta Federal Center, Suite 16T70
61 Forsyth Street, S.W.
Atlanta, GA 30303-8909
800-368-1019      TDD:  800-537-7697
Additional Resources

American with Disabilities Act (ADA)
800-514-0301      TTY 800-514-0383

Disability Rights Florida
800-342-0823      TDD 800-346-4127

Human Rights Commission
904-630-4911      TTY 904-630-4125