Taking consent in a language not known to the patient
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Dr. Neeta Naik
Taking consent in a language not known to the patient
Precautions advised by the Court:

-Every doctor / hospital must specifically check whether the patient's signature on the consent form is in English or not, expecially if the consent form is in English which is usually the case

-In case the patient signature is not in English or the signature clearly reflects that the patient is not well-conversant with English, a different protocol must be followed. Not only must the patient be explained and given all the requisite information in the language known to the patient, but a close relative / friend of the patient, who knows English, must also be made to sign the consent form

-In case of high-risk cases, it is advisable to additionally take signatures of two independent witnesses. This protocol must also be followed in case of illiterate patients or those who have put their thumb impression on the consent form

-Advance payment if made by cheque by the patient, especially in the case of expensive procedures / surgeries, must be taken sufficiently in advance, so that the status is known before the patient is wheeled into the OT

-Using the unused blood of a patient on another patient is not deficiency in service or negligence

-Non-functioning of important equipment, and that too at a vital juncture, is negligence


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