Summary of Client Rights

 If you do not understand written or spoken English, an interpreter will be made available to explain your rights. 

A copy of this Summary will be provided to you after it is reviewed.

For more information, please ask us for a copy of the Rights of Recipients of Mental Health Services. There are both child and adult versions of this booklet. A free copy is also available from the Maine Department of Health and Human Services, 11 State House Station, Augusta, ME 04333-0011 (tel. (207)-287-4243), TTY # 1-800-606-0215. 

As a Sweetser client you have many rights; this is only a summary. In addition to the following rights, you have all of the basic human and civil rights enjoyed by all citizens. 

  • You have the right to receive a full explanation of your rights at the onset of service.
  • You have the right to have a person of your choice, designated by you in writing, assist you to understand and protect your rights.
  • You may not be discriminated against on any basis (i.e. race, creed, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, handicap, or political affiliation).
  • You have the right to have your privacy and your dignity protected at all times.
  • You have the right to have information in your record kept confidential, to have access to that information, to designate the persons or agencies to which that information may be released and to request that the information be amended, all as described in Sweetser’s Notice of Privacy Practices (see below).
  • You have the right to participate fully in the development of your Individualized Service Plan (ISP) and to have anyone that you designate assist you in developing your plan. You are entitled to a copy of this plan and may at any time decline to participate in any component of your plan with which you no longer agree.
  • You have the right to receive services in the least restrictive environment possible.
  • You have the right to a clear and concise explanation of the recommended treatment, including its risks and benefits and the expected duration of the treatment proposed. You have the right to a complete and thorough explanation of any potential risks or benefits of any medications prescribed for you, including possible bio-chemical and/or side-effects of that medicine.
  • Every effort will be made to provide possible alternatives to treatment recommendations or access to a second opinion if requested
  • You have the right to refuse recommended services or medications without affecting other services or medications as long as they can be provided without risk of harm and consistent with proper professional practice.
  • You have the right to request a care provider of your choice or to change your care provider at any time during service, within the limits of availability and if clinically appropriate.
  • You have the right to be free from locked seclusion or mechanical restraint in all Sweetser programs and services.
  • You have the right to access the grievance procedure, if you believe that any of your rights have been violated, to have your grievance answered in writing, to appeal if you disagree with the answer (including appeal to the Maine Department of Health and Human Services), and to be free from any retaliation for your filing a grievance. Information pertaining to the grievance process will be made available to you at any Sweetser office.
    • For assistance, you may contact, for adults, the Grievance Coordinator, Office of Adult Mental Health Services, Maine Department of Health and Human Services, 11 State House Station, Augusta, ME  04333-0011 (tel. (207) 287-4249, TTY 1-800-606-0215), or for children or adolescents, the Children’s Services Grievance Coordinator, Maine Department of Health and Human Services, 11 State House Stations, Augusta, ME  04333-0011 (tel. (207) 624-7930, TTY 1-800-606-0215), or for adults, children or adolescents, the Disability Rights Center, P.O. Box 2007, Augusta, ME 04338-2007 (tel. or TTY: 1-800-452-1948).
  • You have the right to be notified in the event that Sweetser offers a treatment or service that is either experimental or for research purposes, which will be clearly identified as such and must be conducted under a research plan as described in the Rights of Recipients. You have the right to refuse to participate in the research without your refusal in any way affecting the services being provided to you by Sweetser.

The following apply to Residential Facilities only:

  • Right to Least Restrictive Setting. You have the right to be treated in the least restrictive setting that is appropriate to meet your needs.
  • Right to Free Association & Communication. You have the right to keep company with whom you wish, to have visitors and to communicate both by mail and phone unless restriction is determined necessary for safety reasons.
  • Right to Personal Property, Management of Financial Affairs. You have the right to have and use personal items unless this infringes upon the rights of others or is a safety risk. You have the right to manage your own financial affairs except under court order or unless restrictions are a part of your treatment plan.