How Do Liability Waivers Affect Medical Malpractice Claims?May 9th, 2017
If you have ever undergone a medical procedure, you may remember signing a lengthy liability waiver. The main purpose of this waiver is to provide patients with the chance to give their informed consent before undergoing an invasive procedure or diagnostic test. It contains information about the procedure and the possible complications that may arise.
These consent forms are sometimes called “liability waivers,” but that does not necessarily mean that they release hospitals and healthcare providers from liability if they provide substandard care. If you sustained serious injuries or an illness after a medical procedure, contact The Bowling Christiansen Law Firm
David A. Bowling is a medical malpractice lawyer in New Orleans with more than 30 years of trial experience. He will evaluate your case to determine if you have a valid claim. Call (504) 586-5200 today to schedule a consultation.
How Do Liability Waivers Affect Medical Malpractice Claims?
Liability waivers can both prevent and give cause for medical malpractice claims. If the waiver is comprehensive enough that it includes the most common complications and the patient suffers from one of those complications, he or she may not be able to file a lawsuit claiming a lack of informed consent.
If the consent form fails to divulge the extent of all reasonable complications, though, and the patient suffers a complication that should have been a known risk, he or she may have a valid claim on the grounds of inadequate consent.
When Will a Consent Form Prevent a Lawsuit?
Every case is unique; however, a consent form will generally prevent a patient from suing over a lack of informed consent if:
The form adequately identifies the procedure’s most common, likely, or reasonable risks;
The patient did not feel pressured to sign the form; and
The patient was in a competent mental state when signing the form.
Beyond the Form, What Do Patients Have a Right to Know Regarding a Particular Procedure?
According to Ethics in Medicine, the concept of informed consent is intended to protect both patients and providers. Before every medical procedure, there should be a discussion about the following points:
The nature of the procedure;
Any reasonable alternatives to the proposed procedure;
The potential risks, uncertainties, and benefits of each alternative;
The patient’s understanding of the procedure; and
The patient’s acceptance of the approach.
If you sustained debilitating injuries after a medical procedure and you believe that your healthcare provider did not inform you of the possible risks, contact The Bowling Christiansen Law Firm. David A. Bowling will investigate your procedure, gather evidence, calculate your damages, and help you fight for the maximum compensation.