Maryland Medical Malpractice Informed Consent Important Decision

Maryland's highest court has decided an important case clarifying the doctrine of "informed -consent". The case of Mcquitty v. Spangler holds that "the purpose of informed consent is to provide the patient (knowledge) of his or her options as well as risks of specific" procedures.

The backdrop for this decision involved a woman who was 32 weeks pregnant  who had received an abnormal ultra-sound. She was not "informed" of the benefit  of cesarean section and ten days later suffered a uterine collapse requiring emergency surgery.

The trial court had thrown out a substantial verdict saying that the "informed-consent" doctrine only applied to "affirmative violation of the patient's physical integrity."

The Court of Appeals ruled that this concept was wrong. In lay-person's terms something does not have to go wrong with a medical procedure to bring in to play informed-consent. Rather "it is the duty of a healthcare provider to inform a patient of material information" that "would be significant" "in deciding whether or not to submit to a particular procedure."

The Court correctly stated that actual physical contact with a medical procedure is not necessary as the doctrine is vital to "promote a patient's choice."   
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