9. Right to contact attorneys or advocates
All patients should have access to attorneys, courts and other means of addressing their legal concerns. A civil patient who has an assigned attorney has the right to the attorney’s name and contact information. Forensic patients have the right to an attorney throughout their commitment at the hospital. Patients may contact their attorney regarding their care and treatment at the hospital. Forensic patients can hire an attorney at their own expense. As discussed more fully below, a patient also has the right to private and confidential mail and telephone communication with his or her attorney.
Numerous patient protection agencies are also available to assist hospital patients. A patient must be allowed to contact these agencies. Section II of this booklet provides a brief overview of these agencies, as well as their contact information.