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A Guide on Giving Medical Consent in North Carolina

Dec 14, 2021 Brown Moore & Associates Medical Malpractice

There are two types of consent that may enable a medical provider to perform medical care on a patient: implied consent and express consent. Between the two types of consent exist different ways of communicating it, in addition to certain caveats that exist. While failing to provide consent can result in someone not receiving care, a physician failing to gain consent can result in serious legal consequences. Brown Moore & Associates, PLLC hopes to effectively communicate the different kinds of medical consent so that you and your family are protected in cases of medical malpractice.

Express Consent or Informed Consent

Express consent is sometimes known as informed consent. This is a more intentional form of consent in which a doctor is authorized to provide medical treatment or perform a medical procedure by the patient themselves. This is most often done in the form of a contract, but can sometimes be expressed through verbal and non-verbal communication. Express consent is oftentimes defined as a clear and direct statement of agreement.

Patients have the right to make decisions concerning their medical treatment, an important topic in the realm of legal rights and medical ethics. Those receiving care have the right to know their risks and alternative options for whatever is being treated as well. These are oftentimes included in authorization forms that have a lot of information that details a treatment plan and its implications. Remember that it is the responsibility of the physician giving medical care to the patient to properly provide sufficient information regarding their treatment.

Patient authorization forms may include:

  • Diagnoses
  • Proposed courses or plans of treatment
  • Description of the treatment(s) in question
  • Benefits, risks, and potential side effects of the treatment(s)
  • Consequences of not going through with treatment
  • Expected outcomes of the treatment(s)
  • Alternative treatment options
  • And other important pieces of information

There are many different types of medical care that require patient authorization forms. While some are very intrusive, others may simply be tests for bacterial infections.

Implied Consent

Implied consent is a different way that medical care providers are able to legally provide medical care. The word implied means exactly what it sounds like – consent between physician and patient cannot be expressed explicitly and is therefore inferred.

Implied consent can be as simple as rolling up your sleeve for a flu vaccination or as complicated as emergency services giving you life-saving medication on the way to the hospital while you are unconscious. In the case of implied consent, the lines are a little bit more blurry. The concept of implied consent exists to enable medical staff to provide life-saving medical care in situations in which it is impossible for explicit consent to be given in the form of a contract or verbal confirmation.

Your Charlotte-based Firm for Medical Malpractice Claims

Failing to obtain consent, on the other hand, is a typical way that medical malpractice claims begin. This is a common occurrence with negligent doctors or nurses who are failing to properly perform their duties as medical care providers. Brown Moore & Associates, PLLC is familiar with cases such as these, employing top-notch Charlotte medical malpractice attorneys for all of your legal needs following a case involving failure to provide consent. Call us today at 704-335-1500 or click here to learn more about our No Results, No Attorney Fee guarantee.