Violations of Patient Consent
West Palm Beach Medical Malpractice Attorneys
Medical malpractice occurs when doctors, nurses, and other health care
providers fail to treat patients in accordance to the accepted standard
of care. In medical settings, substandard care can take many forms, and
while many commonly associate malpractice with errors during surgery or
mistakes when prescribing medications, it can also happen when medical
professionals perform certain treatment without a patient’s permission.
Health care providers are required to have a patient’s consent when
providing treatment. When they fail to obtain consent and administer treatment,
they may face administrative or even criminal consequences for their negligence,
depending on the situation. When that negligence results in a patient
suffering undue injury, victims may have grounds to pursue a
medical malpractice claim.
Our West Palm Beach medical malpractice lawyers at Clark, Fountain, La
Vista, Prather, Keen & Littky-Rubin have earned national recognition
for their work representing victims and families harmed by negligent health
care providers. If you or someone you love suffered injury as a result
of treatment for which you did not provide your consent, our award-winning
legal team can help you learn more about your rights and options.
Call (561) 922-0258 to discuss your case during a FREE consultation.
Understanding Patient Consent
Doctors have a duty to inform patients about treatment recommendations
and any inherent risks involved. When patients have this information and
agree to a proposed treatment or procedure, they have provided their
In many cases, physicians will have patients sign a consent form detailing
a treatment approach or procedure and associated risks. Obtaining written
express consent, is common prior to surgery. However, express consent does not mean that
a patient provides their informed consent. Doctors have an obligation
to discuss procedures and risks with patients, and to ensure they understand,
as well as they can, the risks they face.
There are certain situations when informed consent is not required. These
- Emergency medical situations
- Emotionally fragile patients
Medical Malpractice Claims & Lack of Consent
Violations of patient consent may include a range of situations, but they
often involve those where surgery is performed on the wrong site or body
part, or when a doctor performs an additional procedure that a patient
did not consent to during an approved operation. Patients may also pursue
lack of consent claims when they experience complications they were not
informed about in consent forms or by their doctor.
Patient consent violations generally fall into the following categories:
Failure to identify – No doctor is expected to foresee every possible complication associated
with a procedure or treatment, but those that are medically documented
and known to the medical community, even if rare, have reason to be included
on consent forms.
Failure to properly describe description – Consent documents must provide accurate representations of risks
and complications. Failures in the description of what a procedure entails
or the risks a procedure poses commonly involve misstatements or inaccuracies,
including inaccuracies about the frequency at which complications occur.
For example, patients may be more inclined to undergo a procedure with
a serious complication that a consent form says affects only 1 percent
of patients, when it really affects far more.
Informed consent is critical in any doctor-patient relationship, and it
is the standard of care reasonable and skillful medical professionals
are expected to provide. When they fail to do so and patients suffer harm,
they can be held liable for victims’ damages.
Discuss Your Case During a FREE Case Evaluation
Our medical malpractice attorneys have earned national recognition for
securing successful results in challenging cases. If you have questions
regarding violations of patient consent and medical malpractice claims,
contact us for a free case evaluation.