Before a doctor, nurse or any healthcare practitioner can examine or treat you, they usually need your consent or permission. This could simply mean following their suggestions, such as the doctor asking you if they can take your blood pressure and you position your arm so they can do the task. Sometimes, depending on the seriousness of the proposed treatment or procedure or if it involves an anaesthetic they will ask you to sign a consent form. If you later change your mind, you can withdraw that consent, even if you have signed a form.
It is really important that you have sufficient information so that you understand and make an appropriate decision about that proposed treatment or procedure. The Informed Consent program provides information such as what the procedure and the anaesthetic involves, what to expect before and after the procedure or treatment, the risks and benefits and any alternative options that maybe available to you. Providing this information assists you to become more actively involved in your own health care decision making.
This information has been designed to be an adjunct not a replacement to the time spent discussing your treatment or procedure with your doctor, nurse or healthcare practitioner.
The Informed Consent program is one of the safety initiatives of the Queensland Health Patient Safety Centre.