When you are suffering from an illness or injury, you just want to get on the road to recovery and feel like yourself again. You trust your doctor to help you do that and inform you about your best treatment options. Sadly, however, that doesn’t always happen.
Informed medical consent
Sometimes, doctors fail to give their patents proper informed medical consent. Yet, they are supposed to inform patients about available treatments and their benefits and risks for everything from surgeries and anesthesia to vaccinations and chemotherapy. Giving proper informed consent is an essential ethical part of establishing a good doctor-patient relationship. It allows patients to understand important aspects of their care and make decisions on their own.
You should have to sign a form indicating you are giving consent for a medical procedure, treatment or test. Only in emergency situations is informed consent not a factor in your care.
Treatment without informed consent
When doctors fail to give patients comprehensive information on their treatment options, or give them a treatment they didn’t approve, that can be a case of medical malpractice. You may have a medical malpractice claim if:
- Your doctor didn’t disclose the risks involved in a specific treatment or procedure.
- You would have chosen a different treatment option if you had known the risks of the treatment you received.
- You suffered harmful consequences from a treatment that you didn’t authorize.
You may be wary of turning your treatment problem into a legal matter. However, medical professionals are required to provide the best care they can for you and let you be a part of your care decisions through informed consent. You want to hold care providers accountable, so that they do a better job of informing other patients about their care options.