Hospital Administration/Informed consent
QUESTION: ON the morning of my recent minor surgery (which fortunately went perfectly)the nurse brought me an informed consent to sign. It included a statement,"My doctor has discussed with me possible adverse effects of this procedure." That was incorrect. He didn't discuss anything with me and didn't have me sign an informed consent.
I signed it, but would have happened if I had crossed out that paragraph and signed the form. Could they have refused to do the procedure? What should I have done?
ANSWER: Hi Jo
I am grateful that your procedure went well. I completely understand your concern about the informed consent. If at any time you have questions don't be afraid to ask. It only takes a few minutes to explain the risks of a procedure. I don't think that marking out anything on the form changes its meaning or would stop the procedure . In the future I suggest that you ask questions and then sign.
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QUESTION: Thank you. I appreciate your answer. And I apologize for not making the situation clear. When they brought me he form to sign, I was in ambulatory care, dressed for surgery, I had already been given dilating and numbing eye drops as well as an oral sedative (valium), the doctor and anesthesiologist were getting ready for me and 3 more patients for cataract surgery after me. Should I have held everything up till I talked to the doctor? It seems to me I was in the position of having to sign something that wasn't true (with possible legal consequences if everything didn't go right)or holding up doctors, nurses and 3 other patients, or not getting my surgery done. What should I have done?
I believe patients have the right to be informed and perhaps you made the right decision for you at the time. However, I suggest that in the future you ask questions prior to the surgery. Sometimes things don't go as planned and sometimes information is not relayed in a formal way so you may need to take a proactive approach in order to feel secure in the event you have to go through another surgery.
I can't speak on whether or not you made the right decision because I was not there and I don't have all the information. I can only suggest that you be mindful of this situation in the future.