Huntersville, NC asked in Medical Malpractice for North Carolina

Q: Is a psychiatric inpatient capable of giving informed consent for shock therapy?

I am his legal spouse - He has not contacted me and the drs/nurses will not give me any information. I saw on his online chart that he is scheduled for ect in a few days. I feel he is not rational enough to consider the pros and cons of this procedure

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1 Lawyer Answer
Denise Anderson
Denise Anderson
  • Medical Malpractice Lawyer
  • Concord, NC
  • Licensed in North Carolina

A: The answer to your question varies based on the state of mind of the patient at the time consent was given.

Informed consent is permission given with the knowledge of possible consequences.

If at the time consent was given the patient was unable to understand the information conveyed to him by the health care providers, then such consent is not informed, and is likely not valid.

As the legal spouse if you feel your spouse is not rational, you may contact the hospital to obtain the necessary information and sign the necessary documents for your spouse's treatment. The treatment is in a few days so there is still time to act.

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