Lack of Informed Consent
Lack of informed consent is one of the least-discussed types of medical malpractice. However, it is a serious problem that often results in harm or worse. While we assume doctors know best and trust them with our health, it is the patient who has the final say in their care and treatment. The problem is that many people do not realize this and go along with their doctor’s suggestions as a result, even when they aren’t comfortable with the treatment plan.
When a doctor does not give a patient all the information they need or offers treatment that he or she did not consent to, they may be held liable for their actions. Lack of informed consent is a growing problem right here in the United States, leading to serious injuries and death. To better understand your rights, it is important you know what informed consent is and why it matters when it comes to medical treatment.
What is Informed Consent?
There are of course inherent risks with any medical procedure, treatment, or surgery. However, some carry more risks than others. It is the responsibility of the doctor to give the patient all the information they need about a specific procedure so they can decide whether or not it is right for them. When the doctor or other medical staff member provides the patient with this pertinent information prior to the procedure, it is referred to as informed consent.
In most cases, doctors will have patients sign a form of consent that details the potential risks, but signing this form does not always mean the patient has given consent. By law, the doctor must verbally discuss the procedure and any risks with the patient. If he or she fails to do so, they may be held liable for their actions. If the patient misunderstood what the doctor discussed with them, they may be able to sue for negligence.
Additionally, a patient must be competent enough to give consent. This means they do not suffer from any mental illness or other impairments.
Filing a Medical Malpractice Lawsuit
If you were injured or lost a loved one because of a medical professional’s negligence or failure to get informed consent prior to moving forward with a treatment or procedure, please contact Wormington & Bollinger. Our Florida medical malpractice lawyers have extensive experience handling these types of cases and are prepared to do the same for you today. Consent must always be given before a doctor can move forward, but this does not always happen. If you were unaware of the risks of a specific surgery or procedure and were harmed as a result, contact Wormington & Bollinger to schedule a free consultation.
We have lawyers licensed in Florida, Texas, Colorado, and New Mexico and are happy to discuss your medical malpractice case with you today.