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Client Rights Policy

It shall be the policy of Community Counseling Center to afford all clients the full spectrum of rights as recipients of our services, to provide all clients with a process by which to address any grievance, and to thoroughly report and investigate any allegation of abuse or neglect.


1.  Each client shall be provided the attached statement of Client Rights and Grievance Procedure at the time of their admission to the Agency and annually if they are served in a program longer than1 year. A copy of the Client Rights and Grievance Procedure will also be made available upon request of the client.

2.  Workforce shall be provided a copy of Client Rights and Grievance Procedure at the time of their hire.

3.  The Agency will periodically hold workforce training in matters of client rights.

4.  Allegations of abuse and neglect are to be reported and will be investigated by the Agency Client Rights Officer in a manner consistent with the Agency’s Client Rights and Grievance Procedure.
   A.  Reporting is the responsibility of all Agency workforce.
   B.  The Chief Executive Officer is to be promptly notified of all allegation of abuse and neglect by workforce and will review the written results of the Client Rights Officer’s investigation. The Chief Executive Officer or designee will notify the MHRS Board of allegations that require a report of Major Unusual Incident (MUI), and the results of the investigation, and will notify the Executive Committee of the Community Counseling Center Board of Directors.
   C.  Where required by law the Chief Executive Officer, or designee, will report allegations of abuse and neglect to appropriate authorities such as the local police, sheriff, or Children’s Services Board. Investigations by these authorities may preempt an internal investigation.
   D.  Any workforce member found to have been guilty of abuse or neglect or to have been witness to such abuse or neglect, and failed to have reported it to the Client Rights Officer or Chief Executive Officer, will be subject to possible disciplinary action by the Agency. This may consist of written reprimand, suspension without pay, or dismissal depending upon the gravity of the offense. When appropriate, the offense may also be reported to the workforce member’s professional licensing authority. Record of confirmed abuse or neglect will be entered into the workforce member’s personnel file for permanent retention.
   E. The Client Rights Officer will train each new workforce member in Client Rights and Client Grievance Procedure, and in recognition and reporting of abuse and neglect. A copy of these policies and procedures will be presented to each Agency employee and volunteer.
   F.  An analysis of all formal complaints:
      a. Is conducted at least annually.
      b. Is documented, including:
         1. Whether formal complaints were received.
         2. Trends.
         3. Areas needing performance improvement.
         4. Actions to address the improvements needed.
         5. Implementation of the actions.
         6. Whether the actions taken accomplished the intended results.


A. Each client of Community Counseling Center has all the following rights:

1.      The right to be treated with consideration and respect for personal dignity, autonomy and privacy;

2.      The right to reasonable protection from physical, sexual or emotional abuse, inhumane treatment, humiliation, and neglect;

3.      The right to freedom from retaliation, financial or other exploitation;

4.      The right to receive services in the least restrictive, feasible environment;

5.      The right to participate in any appropriate and available service that is consistent with an individual service plan (ISP), regardless of the refusal of any other service, unless that service is a necessity for clear treatment reasons and requires the person's participation;

6.      The right to give informed consent to or to refuse any service, treatment or therapy, including medication absent an emergency, composition of deliver team and release of information;

7.      The right to participate in the development, review and revision of one's own individualized treatment plan and receive a copy of it;

8.      The right to freedom from unnecessary or excessive medication, and to be free from restraint or seclusion;

9.      The right to be informed and the right to refuse any unusual or hazardous treatment procedures;

10.   The right to be advised and the right to refuse observation by others and by techniques such as one-way vision mirrors, tape recorders, video recorders, television, movies, photographs or other audio and visual technology;

11.   The right to confidentiality of communications and personal identifying information within the limitations and requirements for disclosure of client information under state and federal laws and regulations;

12.   The right to have access to one's own client record unless access to certain information is restricted for clear treatment reasons. If access is restricted, the treatment plan shall include the reason for the restriction, a goal to remove the restriction, and the treatment being offered to remove the restriction;

13.   The right to be informed a reasonable amount of time in advance of the reason for terminating participation in a service, and to be provided a referral, unless the service is unavailable or not necessary;

14.   The right to be informed of the reason for denial of a service;

15.   The right not to be discriminated against on the basis of race, ethnicity, age, color, religion, gender, national origin, sexual orientation, physical or mental, and/or developmental disability, genetic information, human immunodeficiency virus status, or in any manner prohibited by local, state or federal laws;

16.   The right to know the cost of services;

17.   The right to be verbally informed of all client rights, and to receive a written copy upon request;

18.   The right to exercise one's own rights without reprisal, except that no right extends so far as to supersede health and safety considerations;

19.   The right to file a grievance;

20.   The right to have oral and written instructions concerning the procedure for filing a grievance, and to assistance in filing a grievance with the investigation and resolution of alleged infringement of rights;

21.   The right to be informed of one's own condition; and,

22.   The right to consult with an independent treatment specialist or legal counsel at one's own expense;

23.   The right to access or to a referral to legal entities for appropriate representation, self-help support services and advocacy support services, and other legal rights. 

The Agency has appointed a Client Rights Officer who is responsible to accept and oversee the process of any grievance filed by a client, or other person or Agency on behalf of a client. That person is:

Georgia Farris Romanko, Client Rights Officer
Community Counseling Center
2801 “C” Court
Ashtabula, OH 44004
998-4210 or 1-800-998-4210 Ext. 414
Available during standard business hours: Monday thru Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.

If the Client Rights Officer is unavailable or the subject of the grievance, the alternative person designated to assist the client with his/her grievance is: Mary Beth Porter x483

C. The workforce of Community Counseling Center will explain any and all aspects of client rights and grievance procedure upon request.

D.  A copy of this Client Rights Statement will be distributed to each applicant or client at the intake or next subsequent appointment in writing and orally. These rights will be distributed by the person performing the intake or by the client’s primary service provider.
      a. In a crisis or emergency situation, the client or applicant will be verbally advised of at least the immediate pertinent rights, such as the right to refuse the offered treatment and the consequences of that agreement or refusal. Written copy and verbal explanation may be delayed to the subsequent meeting.
      b. Clients or recipients of community services, (information and referral, consultation, mental health education or prevention, training) may be provided a copy and explanation of the client rights policy upon request.

E.  A copy of the Client Rights Policy shall be posted in a conspicuous location in each building operating by the Agency.

F.  The Agency shall provide that every workforce member is familiar with all specific client rights and the grievance procedure.

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