Code of Conduct

Code of Conduct

Patients, Family Members and Visitors

To provide a safe and healthy environment for all, we ask our patients and visitors to understand and follow our code of conduct policy as follows. 

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Help us maintain a safe and supportive environment of healing, kindness and respect for our patients, families, visitors, and workforce by adhering to the following standards. 

  • Treat everyone with kindness, dignity, and respect.
  • Use respectful, appropriate language and behavior.
  • Respect for patient privacy and avoid disrupting other patients’ care or experiences.
  • Photography, video and audio recordings by patients and visitors are prohibited. EHS workforce members cannot be recorded [in any way]. Certain exceptions are possible, with the consent of all present, provided that no other patients are captured in any recordings or photographs, and that the recording does not interfere with the provision of patient care or other related services.
  • Patients are asked to remain on their assigned unit for safety, privacy and to facilitate timely care.
  • Patients are encouraged to discuss their care plan with the healthcare team and to follow their care plan. Refusal to follow the care plan established may lead to discharge of the patient.

To promote a safe, healing and therapeutic environment, patients, visitors and workforce members are expected to refrain from the following unacceptable behaviors:

  • Physical acts of violence, threatening gestures, or verbal threats of violence against  others.
  • Sexual or vulgar words and actions including unwanted communication with staff member(s), not related to patient care.
  • Behaviors that interfere with patient care, experience, safety or violate a patient’s right to privacy.
  • Property destruction, tampering or theft of any property (medical supplies, equipment, or other EHS property).
  • Possession of weapons or illegal or dangerous items of any kind on EHS property.
  • Weapons must be secured safely away in areas where patient care is provided by EHS workforce members off EHS property.
  • Alcohol, marijuana, and illicit drug use, as well as possession of related paraphernalia on EHS property.
  • Tobacco use, such as vaping or smoking inside any EHS facility is not permitted.
  • Any of the activities outlined in above Definitions.
  • Behaviors that interfere with patient care, experience, safety or violate a patient’s right to privacy.
  • Possession of weapons or illegal or dangerous items of any kind.
  • Use of tobacco, vaping, alcohol, marijuana, and illicit drugs, as well as possession of related paraphernalia.

Code of conduct violations:


  • Patients that violate this code may be discharged from care and may be excluded from future care at Elliot Health System. If a patient does not adhere to the Code’s standards outlined above, a team approach will be used to address the situation and develop a plan to ensure staff and patient safety.
  • If a patient does not adhere to the plan and does not need further treatment, they may be discharged.
  • If the patient continues to engage in unacceptable behavior and they need further treatment, staff should escalate the situation to immediate leadership for further discussion and to engage additional supportive resources as necessary.
  • Though rare, some violations of this Code may lead to patients being discharged from all non-emergent care provided by EHS and asked to seek care from non-EHS providers. Depending on the seriousness of the violation law enforcement may be contacted, and legal action may be taken.


  • If a visitor violates the Code a team approach will be used to inform the visitor of the violation, address the situation, and to assist with setting behavioral expectations for the visitor. Continued violations of the Code may result in the visitor being asked to leave and future visitation may be restricted. Depending on the seriousness of the violation, law enforcement may be contacted, and legal action may be taken.


Acts of Intimidation: Actions that cause another person to feel timid or fearful, or to frighten another person.

Harassment: Occurs when a person is put down, shown hostility, or the recipient of unwanted conduct.

Hostile Words: Aggressive or belligerent verbal abuse in which the recipient reasonably believes that the speaker intends to injure or create excessive stress, or in which the recipient suffers actual psychological trauma.

Physical Assault: Any physical violence or physical attack on a person causing injury.

Physical Violence: Any act or threat attempting to cause, or resulting in, pain and/or physical harm, including but not limited to, punching, pinching, grabbing, hitting.

Threats of Violence: Verbal threats, non-verbal behaviors such as gesturing, stalking, physical intimidation, that communicates an intent to inflict harm or loss on another person.

Verbal Abuse: Harsh and insulting language directed at a person. Verbal abuse includes disrespectful words, yelling, profanity and offensive remarks or gestures about age, race, ethnicity, religion, culture, disability, language, sexual orientation, gender identity, socioeconomic or marital status is unacceptable.

Visitor: A person visiting a patient or area within the scope of this policy. This includes family members and informal caregivers.

Workforce Members: Employed and contracted EHS staff, credentialed medical staff, students, and volunteers.

Workplace Violence: Any act or threat of physical violence, harassment, intimidation, or other threatening behavior.