Healthcare Law

Healthcare Law

The main agenda from Module Five: of Emergency Care, Consent for Treatment, and Withholding Consent is the importance and procedure of a hospital having a facility for emergency care. The article depicts the need of consent from a patient regardless of whether it is a small medical condition or a serious one such as organ donation. The module mainly advises hospitals to maintain emergency care arrangements since no duty will be imposed on a hospital for serving emergency patients.  Another theme in the module is the role of consent in medical emergencies.

Some of the key thing one might learn in this section is that for consent to be valid it must adhere to some requirements, namely: voluntary and well detailed. A patient must do the decision on whether to consent to treatment or not without being pressurized by friends, spouse or medical practitioners. The subject individual should also be given sufficient details regarding the risks, benefits, and requirements of the treatment. Also, the individual must be of sound mind; they must understand the information given to them by medical staff and apply it in their decision making. However, under certain exceptional circumstances, a person’s consent may be called for by the court. This is usually between spouses, and the procedure involves surrogate motherhood or artificial insemination. 

There are two types of Consent, which are express and implied.  The discrepancy among the two arises from the method used by patients in manifesting agreement to consent. For express consent written document or words may be used. On the other hand in the case of implied consent, it manifested by deeds which prove that an individual has agreed to the treatment. Even though a patient is likely to die if they refuse to consent their decision must be honored. It is worthwhile noting that there is civil liability for treatment administered to a competent patient’s refusal to consent and usually the court does not order treatment for such patients. A mental competency test is conducted on a patient so as to be sure that they understand the condition they are in and the consequences of declining consent.

Another thing that one might scope from the module is the reason behind the enactment of natural death act in many states. It is objective is to allow patients that are terminally sick to die with dignity. Although a patient may not be able to grant effective consent on the ground of a disability, mental illness does not equate to incompetence. Even psych patients have the right to consent or refuse.

Applying these lessons in one’s work is critical. For instance from the lessons a medical practitioner get to know that when telling patients about any treatment procedure their welfare and need should be giving much priority. This will go a long way in avoiding incidences where after a treatment patients complain of the side effects which they were not aware of in the first place. The honoring of an individual decision to consent is a lesson that should be respected by all staff in hospitals. Given that the patients are competent and have been well informed pertaining a given treatment, them declining it must have a good reason. It is unethical to disregard consent of individuals because they are very old, young or mentally ill. Patients should be treated equally as long as they have been found competent.

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