Failure to Obtain Informed Consent
In Maryland and in every other state, a patient has a right to know the risks associated with a particular course of treatment. When a doctor or another medical professional fails to disclose the risks of treatment, they take away a patient’s right to make an informed decision. If you or someone close to you suffered harm because of a failure to obtain informed consent, you may be able to file a claim against the at-fault party. At Arfaa Law Group, experienced Baltimore medical malpractice lawyer Julia Arfaa can assess the merits of your case and help you determine your legal options.Take Legal Action Based on a Failure to Obtain Informed Consent
In Maryland, it is a doctor’s duty to explain a proposed treatment or procedure as well as highlight any material risks or inherent dangers associated with that treatment or procedure. This law is designed to give patients enough information to make an intelligent and informed decision about whether or not to opt for the treatment in question. The duty to disclose in Maryland mandates that a doctor describe the following issues to a patient:
- The nature of the illness;
- The nature of the proposed treatment;
- The probability of success of the proposed treatment and its alternatives; and
- The risks of negative outcomes associated with the proposed treatment.
A doctor is not required to outline every possible risk relevant to your medical treatment but only those risks that are “material” to the intelligent decision-making process of a reasonably prudent patient. In Maryland, “material information” is defined as the information that a doctor knows or should know would be significant to a reasonable person in the patient’s position in choosing whether or not to undergo a particular medical treatment or procedure.
In Maryland, a medical malpractice claim is a separate and different claim from a lack of informed consent claim. A medical malpractice claim alleges that a patient was injured because a medical professional breached the applicable and expected standard of care. Put another way, medical malpractice claims are rooted in the theory of negligence. A claim based on a failure to obtain informed consent alleges that a medical professional breached the duty to obtain informed consent for a particular treatment. In Maryland, medical testimony is typically required to establish the elements of an informed consent case.
Even if a patient signed a consent form affirming that the doctor explained all of the risks pertinent to medical treatment, a legal claim against the doctor may still be possible. In such a situation, we would need to review the form and investigate the circumstances of the case to determine whether or not you may have a valid legal claim.Explore Your Options with a Baltimore Lawyer
As a patient, you have a right to make choices about the medical treatment that you receive. If you were harmed because you were not informed about the risks of treatment, you may be able to file a claim based on the failure to obtain informed consent. At Arfaa Law Group, Baltimore attorney Julia Arfaa can help you determine whether your health care provider failed to make all of the appropriate disclosures. She assists people who need an injury attorney throughout the state of Maryland. For a free initial consultation, do not hesitate to call us at 410-889-1850 or contact us online.