Special Services at South Texas Health System McAllen
South Texas Health System (STHS) McAllen offers a variety of special services to make your stay as pleasant and comfortable as possible. To assure that persons with disabilities have an equal opportunity to benefit from services, we provide the following assistance:
- Certified language interpreters are available either on campus or through a contracted interpreter service.
- For persons with hearing impairments: sign language interpreters, tele-interpreters, writing materials, telephone amplification devices or a TTY device.
- For persons with vision impairments: readers, personal assistance, large print or audio-taped materials.
- For persons with speech impairments: writing materials and communications boards.
- For persons with manual impairments: wheelchairs, personal assistance and other lifters.
- Our facility is physically accessible to mobility-impaired persons.
Wi-Fi wireless internet access is available as a complimentary service for patients, families and visitors at STHS McAllen. Wireless service is available in the following locations:
- Lobby and dining areas
- Patient and family waiting areas
- Inpatient rooms
Users needing technical support should call 956-388-2233.
Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)
All departments within STHS McAllen must obtain authorization from the patient or the patient’s personal representative when disclosing protected health information for a purpose other than providing treatment, payment, or healthcare operations. The HIPAA-approved authorization form may be obtained from the Medical Records department. Disclosures made to the patient, the physicians treating the patient, insurance companies, or law enforcement officials do not need to be tracked, but we must make certain that a consent form (different from authorization form) is in the medical record before the release.
If you need copies of your medical record, including but not limited to, reports, films, videos, CDs, or DVDs after discharge, please contact Medical Records. There may be a fee for copying your records.
STHS McAllen has a multidisciplinary ethics committee. During your hospital stay issues may arise concerning the extent or course of your treatment. If this should occur, you or your family should request to meet with the physicians on the case, the risk manager, the case manager or social worker, or the department director. If this cannot be resolved after meeting with the patient, family and physician, then the dilemma may be referred to the ethics committee. Any of the above can assist you with making this request.
End-of-Life Care and Palliative Care
Providing quality, holistic end-of-life care is part of the mission of the caregivers and doctors at STHS McAllen. Holistic care includes pain and symptom management, emotional and spiritual support, inclusion of patient and family members in all decisions, and responsiveness to the needs of the patient and the family. We are dedicated to treating our patients and their family with the utmost respect. Our clinical staff and doctors make every effort to:
- Meet the patient’s and family’s needs in a timely, considerate and empathetic way
- See to it that all tests, interventions and treatments are explained in an emotionally sensitive and supportive decision making process
- Provide empathetic emotional and spiritual support to all people
- Patients are treated as a “whole” person and not just a “disease.” Ultimately, our goal is to listen to our patients and their families, and to provide as much comfort and caring as possible, especially at the end of a patient’s life. Please refer any questions you may have concerning end-of-life care to your physician.
Texas and federal law gives every competent adult, 18 years or older, the right to make his or her own health care decisions, including the right to decide what medical care or treatment to accept, reject, or discontinue. If you do not want to receive certain types of treatment or if you wish to name someone to make health care decisions for you, you have the right to make these desires known to your doctor, hospital or other healthcare providers, and in general have these rights respected. You also have the right to be told about the nature of your illness in terms that you can understand, the general nature of any proposed treatments, the risks of refusing to undergo these treatments and any alternative treatments or procedures that may be available to you.
Upon registration at the hospital, you will be asked about advance directives and given written information about them upon request. Please do not hesitate to contact the admitting office, your nurse, your physician, risk management or case management for more information about advance directives.
If you have advance directives or a living will, please provide us with a copy as soon as possible upon your admission to the hospital.
Organ, Tissue and Eye Donation
Donation of organs and tissue is a gift of life and health for many people with serious or life-threatening disease. STHS McAllen works with the Texas Organ Sharing Alliance (TOSA). We will ensure that all patients and families who meet the established criteria are provided the opportunity to discuss organ, tissue and eye donation with TOSA. For more information on organ donation, contact TOSA directly at the toll free number 1-866-685-0277.
Case management is available to help you and your family cope with the problems and stresses that often accompany illness or hospitalization. Professional social workers provide support and guidance in your decisions regarding discharge from an acute care facility. They are experienced in working with community agencies that can provide you with the following services that you might need during discharge:
- Nursing homes
- Home health
- Durable medical equipment
- Outpatient facilities
Our clinical laboratory is fully accredited and certified by the College of American Pathologists. The lab operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week and stays current in technologies for services, including:
- Blood Bank
- Immunology and serology
- Special chemistry
- Pathology (Monday through Friday)
- Wellness screenings