Understanding Informed Consent
If you have undergone a surgical procedure but feel you were not fully informed about all of the facts relating to the treatment beforehand, this means you did not give your informed consent and you may therefore be able to make a claim for compensation. The team at Hospital Negligence can provide the assistance you need to give you every chance of making a successful claim.
About Informed Consent
When told of the need for surgery or a procedure to alleviate a medical condition, it can be a stressful time for the patient and their family. They often have no option but to trust the advice they are given and hope that the healthcare representative responsible for their care is advising them of the best course of action.
However, an issue that many patients may not be aware of is that hospital staff must ensure they obtain ‘informed consent’ from the patient before any operation is carried out. The patient will be asked to sign a consent form before undergoing the procedure, which in any other circumstances would be considered an assault.
However, a signed consent form is not valid unless the patient was fully informed of certain issues and therefore has given informed consent.
What Is Informed Consent?
Informed consent is a legal term that means the patient is fully aware of the facts about the treatment they are about to undergo, and the alternatives available to them. A doctor must discuss the procedure with the patient in detail and ensure they understand all these facts before agreeing to go ahead.
The facts that must be explained include:
- The details of the procedure or operation and why they believe it is necessary
- The likely benefits of the procedure
- The risks involved
- What alternatives exist and what the risks and benefits of these are
- The risks and benefits if the patient does not undergo the procedure
If the doctor does not go through all these issues adequately with the patient but the operation or procedure still goes ahead, then they have not given their informed consent and this is a breach of duty by the doctor.
How Do I Make an Informed Consent Claim?
In these circumstances it may be possible to bring a claim, but you must be able to show that with proper consent you would not have undergone the procedure. You may have not gone ahead with the procedure if you had known about the risks involved and the alternatives, which may have been less invasive.
If you think this has happened to you or someone you love, then it is important that you seek specialist legal advice, and this is where the medical law experts at Hospital Negligence can help. We understand this complex area of law and the steps that need to be taken and if you are eligible for compensation we can obtain this for you.
Talk to Us
You can contact our team in complete confidence, for free and with no obligation to take things further. Contact the team today on 0800 014 7481 or complete our online enquiry form and we will give you specialist legal advice on the options available to you and advise you if you are entitled to compensation.