This tutorial reviews the main ethical and legal problems faced by a working obstetrician or gynaecologist in relation to consent, confidentiality, patients under 16 years of age and vulnerable adults. There has been a lot of emphasis in recent years placed on obtaining consent for surgical and medical procedures as part of the Good Medical Practice guide (General Medical Council 2013) and in order to avoid litigation. This has become an integral part of clinical risk management and clinical governance.
When you have completed this tutorial you will be able to:
- understand the principles and legal issues surrounding informed consent
- understand what consent is
- understand the types of consent
- be able to seek valid consent from patients and know how to deal with the under-16 age group and vulnerable adults
- be aware of the importance of maintaining confidentiality
- understand medical ethics.
This tutorial was written by Wasim Lodhi MRCOG, Roshan Zeirideen Zaid MRCOG and Mr Wai Yoong FRCOG.
Last updated December 2015.