Many are raised to believe that doctors know best, so when something goes wrong during medical treatment, it is hard to believe they’re at fault. The situation becomes particularly dire if you didn’t give informed consent. Some doctors are quite self-assured, so they might not feel the need to explain your treatment options. They may think you won’t understand, so they gloss over the details. However, as a patient, your doctor needs to tell you about the specifics of your condition and how your injury or illness is progressing. You must be informed of the recommended forms of treatment, the potential risks of the treatment, and the possibility and extent of side effects. If there are any alternative treatment options, your doctor is required to present them to you.
Patients can make decisions
Once you have all the relevant data, you have a right to choose your own form of treatment. You don’t have to do what your doctor says, and it’s okay to get a second opinion. The only time when your doctor can decide for you is if you are unconscious or incapacitated. In such cases, your next of kin can be asked to give consent on your behalf. This happens a lot during surgery. It’s also the only time when a doctor can treat you without your permission, because at that point, your treatment is literally a matter of life or death. Unfortunately, even in these dire circumstances, something can go wrong.
Make a claim of non-informed consent
Paul du Plessis Attorneys have 18 years of experience in medico-legal claims. If you feel your treatment was compromised and you didn’t expressly give consent, we can help. We will get your medical records and have them reviewed by our medical experts. They will advise you on whether they would have followed the same treatment regime or made the same decisions. If they disagree and you have a case, we will make a claim on your behalf. Give us a call for more information or professional advice on legal matters.