Before a physician performs a procedure on a patient, especially surgery, the doctor is required to relay some information about the risks, benefits, and alternatives to the procedure so that the patient can make an informed decision about his or her medical treatment. If you or someone close to you has been a victim of medical malpractice caused by a lack of informed consent, our skilled Rochester medical malpractice attorneys can help. At DeFrancisco & Falgiatano Personal Injury Lawyers, we are committed to helping our clients pursue the compensation they deserve for their harm.
In New York, it is a physician’s duty to explain the proposed medical treatment or procedure to a patient and advise the patient of any “material risks” that a reasonably prudent doctor would have disclosed. This typically means the doctor must highlight inherent dangers associated with the potential course of treatment. This law is designed to empower patients with all of the relevant information they would need to make an informed decision about their health. As a result, doctors must obtain informed consent for non-emergency treatments, diagnostic procedures involving invasion of the body, and participation in medical research.
If the doctor did not obtain informed consent prior to operating, the lack of informed consent may constitute medical malpractice. Medical malpractice occurs when a medical professional fails to adhere to the standard of care that another medical professional in the same specialty would have followed in the same or similar circumstances. It is important to note, however, that a lack of informed consent alone does not constitute medical malpractice. Instead, the lack of informed consent must have caused harm to the patient. The central question in a malpractice claim involving informed consent is as follows: would a reasonable person presented with the full and proper information have declined the procedure? This is a question that is typically answered by the jury, after evaluating the evidence in the case.
Of course, medical professionals are not required to obtain informed consent in every situation. In fact, the general exceptions to the requirement of obtaining valid consent include: i) emergency situations in which there is not always time to obtain a patient’s consent or when a patient may be unconscious and unable to communicate; ii) risk of significant emotional harm or physical harm; iii) compulsory tests (i.e., a situation involving a mental health problem).
Patients in New York and across the country have a right to make knowledgeable decisions about their health. If you or someone you know did not have a chance to provide informed consent, it is important to seek the help and guidance of a seasoned Rochester medical malpractice attorney. At DeFrancisco & Falgiatano Personal Injury Lawyers, we understand the nuances of this area of law and are dedicated to representing the best interests of our clients at every step of the way. You can rest assured that we can diligently help you seek financial recovery for the damages you incurred. For a free case evaluation, do not delay in calling us at 315-479-9000 or contacting us online.
More Blog Posts:
Medical Malpractice due to Misdiagnosis in New York, Rochester Medical Malpractice and Personal Injury Blog, December 19, 2017
Statute of Limitations in New York Medical Malpractice Cases, Rochester Medical Malpractice and Personal Injury Blog, December 12, 2017
The Basic Elements of a Rochester Medical Malpractice Claim, Rochester Medical Malpractice and Personal Injury Blog, December 5, 2017