Outpatient Surgery Magazine

OR Excellence Award Winners - September 2017 - Subscribe to Outpatient Surgery Magazine

Outpatient Surgery Magazine, providing current information on Surgical Services, Surgical Facility Administration, Outpatient Surgery News and Trends, OR Excellence and more.

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The Limits of Informed Consent Can patients claim damages if they were aware of the risks? T he issue of informed consent raises its head in many medical malprac- tice cases. Usually it hap- pens with cases in which the patient claims the surgeon didn't properly inform him of the risks associated with a given surgical procedure. But what about those malpractice cases that don't raise a challenge to consent? Is the fact that a surgeon made a patient aware of the risks relevant to the standard of care? Not according to a recent ruling in the case of Mitchell v. Shikora. Here's why. The value of consent When we use the term "informed consent," we're referring to the form a patient signs authorizing the surgeon to perform a specific proce- dure, with full knowledge of the inherent risks and potential complica- tions. The issue played a central role in Mitchell v. Shikora (osmag.net/EDQa8a), which involved a patient who had her bowel severed during a hysterectomy performed by an obstetric and gyneco- logic surgeon at a Pittsburgh, Pa., hospital in May 2012. 2 6 • O U T PA T I E N T S U R G E R Y M A G A Z I N E • S E P T E M B E R 2 0 1 7 Medical Malpractice Amy Redington Riley, JD • DON'T RUSH Don't ask the patient to sign a consent form just before the anesthesia is about to be administered. Jason Meehan

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