The current health care debate has raised many questions about the decisions made by Indiana doctors in treating their patients. Lost in the discussion is the fact that, by law in Indiana, the right to make treatment decisions lies with the patient.
Indiana Code Sec. 34-18-13-3 requires Indiana physicians to obtain their patient’s “informed consent” before any “treatment, procedure test, or examination” is performed by the physician. In order to obtain informed consent, the doctor must advise the patient of:
- The general nature of the patient’s condition.
- The proposed treatment, procedure, examination, or test.
- The expected outcome of the treatment, procedure, examination, or test.
- The material risks of the treatment, procedure, examination, or test.
- The reasonable alternatives to the treatment, procedure, examination, or test.
If a doctor treats a patient without obtaining the patient’s informed consent to the treatment and the patient is injured, the patient may have a malpractice claim against the doctor. The situation frequently arises when doctors fail to tell their patients of risks of or alternatives to proposed surgery.
The attorneys at Garau Germano, P.C. have a wealth of experience in dealing with Indiana malpractice claims involving issues of informed consent. If you or a loved one has been injured by malpractice, please feel free to contact us.