This article has two objectives: first of all, to present the European WHO project "Health Promotion in Hospitals" in a general way and secondly, to report on results of empirical concomitant research on a sub-project on quality assessment from the patient's viewpoint in a Hamburg member hospital of the international WHO pilot project and to present the essential partial aims of this approach to health promotion. An interim report on the international pilot project showed clearly that among all the realisation projects those are the most frequent ones that aim at promoting the health of patients (87 of a total 181). We report on one of these projects (partly sponsored by the North German Centre of Public Health). Focus is on the results of a quantitative query among patients (n = 157 = 58% response rate). The methods on which the study is based as well as the relevant limitations of its representative nature are outlined. Essential results quoted are the assessments made by the patients themselves taking into consideration 11 dimensions of hospital quality. It becomes evident that action should be taken in the area of several communicative dimensions and in hospital facilities. The results of the inquiry provided the basis for hospital quality improvements. An internal project group within the hospital worked out recommendations that have since been translated into reality to a large extent.