Understanding the legal considerations of consent in nursing practice
Evidence and practice    

Understanding the legal considerations of consent in nursing practice

Iwan Dowie Head of post registration, University of South Wales, Pontypridd, Wales

Why you should read this article:
  • To refresh your knowledge of the definition and types of consent

  • To be aware of the elements required to ensure that a patient’s consent is valid

  • To understand the considerations that are necessary when a patient does not have the mental capacity to consent to treatment

Consent to treatment is a common, albeit complex, aspect of nursing practice. Over the past few years, laws have been strengthened to provide increased recognition of patient autonomy. This has meant that there is a greater onus placed on nurses to understand how consent is obtained from patients, the elements required to ensure any consent is valid, and how to proceed when it has been determined that a patient does not have the mental capacity to consent to treatment. This article explores some of the legal considerations that nurses should keep in mind when seeking consent from a patient.

Nursing Standard. doi: 10.7748/ns.2021.e11828

Peer review

This article has been subject to external double-blind peer review and checked for plagiarism using automated software

@IwanDowie

Correspondence

iwan.dowie@southwales.ac.uk

Conflict of interest

None declared

Dowie I (2021) Understanding the legal considerations of consent in nursing practice. Nursing Standard. doi: 10.7748/ns.2021.e11828

Published online: 22 November 2021

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