NEW Law On Medical Malpractice Informed Consent…

Medical malpractice and informed consent:Is the surgeon himself* required to get the patient’s informed consent or can the surgeon use his* staff to get the patient’s written consent?

Anyone who’s ever been set to undergo surgery knows the drill.
Just before you are about to get your anesthetic someone comes in to your hospital room with forms to sign.
Sometimes those forms include what is called the patients informed consent.

Informed consent means that you are agreeing to let the doctor perform the surgery as outlined to you and to take any measures the surgeon feels necessary to preserve your well-being.
You are agreeing to let the doctor invade your body.
Without you signing the informed consent document the Dr’s invasion of your body would be called a battery in the law

The question again is must the surgeon HIMSELF* explain the procedure to you and get your signature on the dotted line?

An argument has often been made by hospitals and surgeons that sometimes a doctor is doing 10 or 11 surgeries a day. If he has to take the time to visit each patient before the surgery and explain the procedure and any possible risks involved, he wouldnt be able to do all his daily surgeries.

Well the Pennsylvania Supreme Court on June 27,2017 ruled on the issue.

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court said the surgeon himself * MUST get the informed consent of the patient. Not his medical secretary or his staff personnel. He himself is required to get it.
It was based on a jury’s determination that there was no medical malpractice in a patient’s case.
On appeal the patient’s attorney argued that the surgeon who performed the operation never got the informed consent of the patient.


Because the doctors staff not the doctor himself had the patient sign the form. Therefore under the legal definition of informed consent, the patient signature was invalid. Pittsburgh wrongful death informed consent medical malpractice and injury attorney Bernie Tully thinks the reasoning of the Supreme Court is right on.

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court basically said without a direct dialogue and a question-and-answer availability between the patient and the surgeon, there is no way the patient could make an informed consent.

Pittsburgh wrongful death informed consent medical malpractice and car accident injury lawyer Bernie Tully would like those who take the opposite position to answer a simple question:how can the surgeon’s staff answer intricate questions the patient might have about this surgical procedure itself?

It would seem that only the surgeon could answer these questions. That in part was the logic behind the Pennsylvania Supreme Court decision recently on this issue.

This is a huge case legally.
What this decision is going to do is require hospitals and surgeon to make the operating doctor available to the patient’s prior to the procedure being done.

Incredibly the Hospital Health System Association of Pennsylvania has already started to pressure state representatives to change this law and enact legislation to lift this burden from the doctors.

What do you think of their position?
Do you think they are putting the almighty $$ ahead of patient care and information?

Does it really much matter if the surgeon can only do 10 operations a day instead of 11 by taking the extra time to inform each patient he is going to operate on about the risks involved?

What do you think about this?
*Ladies you’ll notice that I almost always refer to the surgeon as he.

There’s a reason for that. It’s because almost all surgeons are male.

But why shouldn’t more women be surgeons? Today in the law over 50% of all incoming law students are female.
Why shouldnt it be that way in the medical field too?

Thanks for reading.

Bernie the attorney