Informed Consent for Surgery: Who is Consenting?

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Professor, Consultant Pathologist, American Board Certified Pathologist, Fellow College of American Pathologists. Areas of interest Fine Needle Aspiration Cytology, Cytology, Cancer, Ethics, Islam, Humanity

Informed Consent for Surgery: Who is Consenting?

Ziyad Afzal Kiyani*and IrumGilani**
*Department of Surgery, Abbas Institute of Medical Sciences,
** Department of Community Medicine, AJK Medical College Muzaffarabad AJK

Objective: To evaluate the awareness of informed consent among patients and current consent practices in a
teaching hospital.
Study Design: Cross-sectional Survey.
Place and Duration: The study was carried out at Abbas Institute of Medical Sciences attached teaching
hospital of AJK Medical College Muzaffarabad from February 2011 to April 2011.
Materials and Methods: A closed ended questionnaire exploring the knowledge about informed consent
was administered to the patients post-operatively to study their awareness and the practices of informed consent
in the hospital.
Ethical approval: Ethical approval was taken from the hospital ethical committee. Informed consent wastaken from all the subjects and their identity was kept confidential Sample size: sample size was calculated by using WHO sample size estimator
Results: Out of ninety three respondents 59 (63.4%) were male and 34(36.6%) were female. Only 22 (23.7%) respondents gave consent of their surgery themselves for rest of 71 (76.3%) their attendants signed the consent for
their patient’s surgery. 17 (28.8%) males and 12 (35.2%) females thought that they should have given consent
Conclusion:Patients, doctors and staff all are in a state of confusion that who should give consent; patient or
attendants.Teaching ethics at undergraduate level will increase awareness in doctors; this will be a long term
strategy. As far as short term there is a dire need of developing protocols regarding informed consent at each
hospital level.
Key Words: Informed consent, Ethics, Post-operative.


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