The name Institut Guttmann brings together the commitment to society of two private foundations, the Institut Guttmann Foundation (1962) and the Institut Guttmann of Neurorehabilitation Foundation (2001). Both foundations share the same objective and complement each other.
The Institut Guttmann is conscious that human relationships play a decisive role in its development and considers that respect for dignity; confidence and integrity are essential values in all its actions. Therefore, it maintains an honest, ethical and responsible legal behaviour towards people with whom it has regular contact and those from whom expects similar behaviour.
The Institut Guttmann is a social initiative, non-denominational, non-profit-making, Catalan private entity totally committed to compliance with legal and ethical conduct rules. These rules are present in all entity’s actions and govern its relationships with people with disabilities of a neurological origin and their families (who are the reason of its existence), as well as with its employees and collaborators (all of them essential to achieve the institution’s mission), and also with the different administrations, institutions, entities, companies or individuals.
The Institut Guttmann’s commitment is defined in its articles of association as well as in its institutional mission, vision and values; and it is highlighted in theorganizational rules and procedures. These ethical commitments go beyond legal and administrative requirements, good practice and the Protectorate of Foundations.
The Institut Guttmann, then, voluntarily and periodically:
·Audits, through an independent signatory, its annual accounts, in order to guarantee a rigorous, efficient, prudent and austere financial, patrimonial and fiscal management.
·Submits its structure, organizational model and action procedures before national and international accreditation organizations for certification of the security and quality of its medical, scientific and teaching assistance.
·In the field of neurorehabilitation, systematically evaluates the functional, psychological and social integration results of the medical care process and compares them with those of other leading hospitals in this speciality.
·Exercises a policy of total informative transparency by means of its annual publication Report – Social Study, in which the entirety of its developed activities, the results achieved and the methods employed are presented in an appropriate, clear, and veracious manner.
·Through its adherence to the Code Model of the Union of Catalan Hospitals, it guarantees proper information management, and the confidentiality and protection of personal data.
·Through the Ethical Aid Committee, promotes the protection of individuals’ rights, the deference of their dignity and basic autonomous principals, welfare, non-maliciousness and justice obtained through any given care procedure. This is achieved by means of special consideration to the correct use of informative consent; whilst striving for accurate deployment of clinical procedures in the treatment of its patients and the necessary diligence in clinical research proceedings.
·Offers a document titled Informative Dossier, aimed at patients receiving care at the hospital, which helps to further understand and protect the rights and obligations of the patients and their families. This document is handed out to patients upon arrival at the centre and it includes a section about “Patient rights and requirements”, as well as established procedures for registering complaints and suggestions.
·Compiles an account of all its activities and submits its main projects, on which addressees can form an opinion, through the Institut Guttmann Social and Participative Council. The Council was created on the Institut Guttmann own initiative. The main associations for people with physical disabilities in Catalonia, the relevant public administrations and experts are all represented in it.
In all its areas of activities, the Institut Guttmann will uphold special sensitivity and attention to emerging social needs, particularly in areas relating to people with functional diversity, and will promote the values of tolerance, respect to the dignity of all the individuals with independence of their personal, economical and social circumstances, and the cultural diversity as a social wealth. In all its initiatives, together with the accomplishment of its foundational aims, it will work to be an example of an organization which is responsible, enterprising, solidary, watchful of the new social needs as well as committed to the people, the progress of the society as a whole and environment preservation.
Concerning clinical matters:
·The Institut Guttmann’s commitment, which incorporates the entire medical team, is that of providing all the people who attends with the best and complete medical-rehabilitative attention, offering the highest human, scientific and technical standards. This commitment helps patients to achieve the highest possible functional independence and boost their self-esteem. With proper guidance regarding the defence of their rights, patients are encouraged, conditions permitting, to achieve a satisfactory, active and self-managed return to society.
·The relationship with its patients will be based on criteria of total respect for the dignity of the individual, comprehensively throughout the different evolutional conditions of their disease, maintaining their greatest personal autonomy possible and at the same time guaranteeing non-discrimination by reason of gender, origin, race, ethnic origin, culture, religion, socio-economical condition, functional diversity or whatever other personal or social circumstances.
·The patients’ religious, ideological and cultural beliefs will be respected, as long as they do not conflict with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the current ruling legislation or third party rights.
·All efforts will be made to achieve a patient/family – therapeutic team relationship based on confidence, confidentiality and mutual respect. These efforts should carry precise, truthful, prudent and clear information relating to state of health as well as clinical and prognostic procedures as a key factor. Information should be carefully given in order for it not to be detrimental to the patient.
Concerning research matters:
·Rigorous, strict and responsible research activity will be encouraged, especially clinical and translational, covering various products, procedures, techniques and/or technologies applicable to the field of neurorehabilitation. This should centre around the recovery of health and bodily functions and the improvement of the quality of life for people with severe disabilities of a neurological nature. Furthermore, it should also contribute to the study of various bio-psycho-social factors that influence social integration.
·All research works must receive prior approval as well as supervision and guidance from the Research and Educational Committee and the Ethical Care Committee, both belonging to the Institut Guttmann, and an external Ethical and Clinical Research Committee when concerning clinical assays.
·The welfare, judicial (risk/benefit appreciation) and wilfulness values, by means of the corresponding informed agreement, will be guaranteed in all research procedures. Confidentiality and privacy of both, participants and their personal data, will be maintained.
Concerning educational matters:
·The Institut Guttmann will favour the creation and transfer of knowledge and skills typical of neurorehabilitation by means of the development of educational programmes, mainly multidisciplinary, in continued and in regulated teaching. The programmes will be geared toward students willing to start to learn about this field of knowledge and to professionals wishing to develop an in-depth knowledge of this speciality, whilst demonstrating their institutional values and ethical norms.
Concerning social matters:
·The Institut Guttmann, in all its forms, will keep a pro-active attitude in favour of the defence of rights and of an effective balance of opportunities for people with disabilities. It will also contribute to the generation of favourable attitudes for complete social integration through actions of prevention, popularization and social sensitizing.
·In accordance with its possibilities, the Institut Guttmann will attempt to give support to and play a major role in the associative movement of people with functional diversity resulting from serious acquired neurological injury, in the promotion and improvement of their living conditions, vis-à-vis the models of personal autonomy, independent living, self-management and social integration.
Concerning occupational matters:
·The human team is the most valued asset of the Institut Guttmann. The human quality of every one of its members, their professional competence and their individual attitude are essential elements in achieving all the institutional objectives.
·The Institut Guttmann will foster a professional environment based on the confidence and cohesion of each one of its members and on the establishment of an atmosphere of mutual respect that stimulates companionship. The professional environment will strengthen the capabilities, proficiency and skills of their members whilst respecting individuality and recognising and rewarding good performance by offering opportunities for professional development and personal growth, participation in the decision-making process and commitment to the institutional mission, vision and values.
·Its occupational policy, absolutely respectful with the law and proactive in labour risks prevention, will promote that all its human team, professionals and collaborators, develop its work with security, comfort, initiative, cooperation, quality and responsibility. All of them will get the same work and promotion opportunities with independence of their genre, origin (ethnic or racial included), civil state, age, social or economical condition, disability, religion or convictions, political ideas, sexual orientation, support or lack of it of unions and its agreements, family ties with other employees of the organization o whatever other personal or social circumstances.
·In order to strengthen the ethic commitment and avoid possible or likely conflicts of loyalty and vested interest, which might muddy the good institutional image, the Institut Guttmann has prohibited all its professionals:
– Reciprocal concurrence in care activities developed by the Institute.
– Take part in expert or judicial procedures requested by any side. When requested, it will be done so by a Judge and any involvement will be as a professional of the hospital.
– Receive, under any circumstance, remuneration or payment in money or in kind, from any organization, provider or client of the hospital. Only gifts or rewards of scant economical value can be accepted.
·With regard to new employment opportunities, the Institut Guttmann, in keeping with its foundational objective, will positively discriminate in favour of candidates with certified disability, provided that they are duly qualified, and that their personal profile and capacities are suitable to carry out the job at hand.
·Everybody that forms part of the Institut Guttmann’s human team, professionals and collaborators, have the right and the requirement to know and comply with this Code of Ethics, raise any questions and make any suggestions or proposals of change that they deem appropriate, and report any incompliance or presumed incompliance to contribute to the improvement of the Institution and of people developing their professional activity therein.
·Every effort will be made to ensure that these codes of ethics and conduct, as well as their benefits to the professional environment and workplace, will encompass all professionals and collaborators of subcontracted companies that carry out their work in the Institut Guttmann’s own facilities. Therefore, the Institution will seek the best possible integration and cooperation amongst everybody, independent of the enterprise to which they belong, whilst guaranteeing that these companies deploy personnel policies that do not conflict with this Code of Ethics, or with all other institutional values.
Concerning business matters:
·The Institut Guttmann strives to be, through its business practices, a centre of excellence. Therefore, it will foster prudent, efficient, transparent and responsible management and high standards of the services that it offers, by responding efficiently to the changing needs of modern society and representing a positive influence on society.
·All the business practices of the Institut Guttmann will be carried out ethically with strict compliance to applicable laws and regulations. It will not seek nor accept any business opportunity or competitive advantage that goes against its Code of Ethics and its institutional values.
·Relationships with third parties will be established on fair and transparent foundations, with adherence to institutional objectives, to provide mutual benefits. Under no circumstance will it maintain relationships or links with other organisations that could cause conflict of intentions, objectives and/or institutional values.
·The Institut Guttmann requires that all its suppliers share a mutual approach of integrity in all its commercial relationships, a total respect of current regulations and, especially, those that refer to the obligation to employ disabled people, as well as those that refer to the protection of infancy and of the environment.
·Its buildings, facilities and equipment will be meticulously managed in order to provide the highest levels of security, comfort, functionality and efficiency, for patients, visitors, professionals and collaborators alike.
·It will adopt a pro-active approach to the protection of the environment. It will make rational use of non-renewable energies and water as a scarce good. It will seek to avoid the use of polluting products or devices, and it will scrupulously operate perilous residues and other dangerous materials with strict adherence to applicable regulations.
Concerning civil society:
·The Institut Guttmann wishes to be an example of attentive, progressive, enterprising, innovative, multicultural and solidarity attitude in civil society, whilst also being a reference point for positive influence for all other social initiatives.
·It will maintain cooperative relationships and will seek synergies that generate mutual benefits, preferably with entities coinciding with the aims, institutional values and similarities of working methods.
·It will attempt to know the origin of donations received and will not accept any aid arising from criminal activities, contrary to human rights or those that go against their values.
·The Institut Guttmann will preserve its juridical condition as a non-profit making private entity, born from the civil society towards which it owes, as one of its much valuable riches; and for that it will act according to its Statutes, with full independence regarding any other organization, entity or institution, and from its free and supreme right to take decisions, it will establish solid cooperation relationships with the different public administrations an d other public an private entities, both in defense and promotion of the common wealth and the best achievement of its foundational purposes.
The Institut Guttmann Foundation Board of Directors and the Institut Guttmann of Neurorehabilitation Foundation Board of Directors, highest governing and representative bodies that are united under the denomination of Institut Guttmann, are responsible for the approval of the current Code of Ethics and for its validity and compliance.
The members of the Boards will exercise their charge in a spirit of service, in an efficient, altruistic and responsible manner, loyal to their foundational will and to their institutional objectives and values. Both, individual members of the Board and representatives from public or private organizations will work in total loyalty and independence in the interest of the Institut Guttmann.
Badalona/Barcelona – 3 June 2009