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Implications for Australian anaesthetists and proceduralists of a recent court decision regarding informed consent and patient positioning

Breen, D. T., Mahar, P. D., Batty, L. M. and Rosenfeld, J. V. 2014, Implications for Australian anaesthetists and proceduralists of a recent court decision regarding informed consent and patient positioning, Anaesthesia and intensive care, vol. 42, no. 1, pp. 11-14.

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Title Implications for Australian anaesthetists and proceduralists of a recent court decision regarding informed consent and patient positioning
Author(s) Breen, D. T.
Mahar, P. D.
Batty, L. M.
Rosenfeld, J. V.
Journal name Anaesthesia and intensive care
Volume number 42
Issue number 1
Start page 11
End page 14
Total pages 4
Publisher Australian society of anaesthetists
Place of publication Edgecliff, N. S. W.
Publication date 2014-01
ISSN 0310-057X
1448-0271
Keyword(s) femoral nerve neurapraxia
informed consent
patient positioning
Summary  This article discusses the medicolegal implications of a recent judgment in relation to a patient who suffered significant morbidity as a result of patient positioning during an operative procedure. The patient developed an unexpected serious complication following surgery, in the context of a preoperative consent that did not cover every potential complication or contingency. The court held that the failure to warn of a particular risk that would have prevented the patient from undergoing a procedure but did not occur will not necessarily result in a finding of negligence in relation to another risk where the harm did occur. This finding is well aligned to current clinical practice and at the same time does not abrogate the practitioner's duty to provide a comprehensive list of possible complications during the consent process for any proceduralist. In the context of a procedure requiring anaesthesia, the importance of communication and understanding between the anaesthetist and proceduralist as to which aspects of the consent process are undertaken by whom, and to ensure the process is done comprehensively, is of great importance and is indirectly highlighted by this recent judgment.
Language eng
Field of Research 111709 Health Care Administration
Socio Economic Objective 920208 Health Policy Evaluation
HERDC Research category C2 Other contribution to refereed journal
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30065823

Document type: Journal Article
Collection: School of Medicine
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Created: Thu, 18 Sep 2014, 15:48:37 EST by Jane Moschetti

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