, Volume 8, Issue 1, pp 40-48

Physicians, battery, and the duty to give informed consent

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Abstract

This essay discusses the issue of informed consent as it relates not only to physician duty but also to patient duty. The author is particularly concerned with the possibility of battery charges against the physician unless a clear patient duty is articulated. In summary, the author concludes that we can prevent doctors from being forced to commit battery in a way which allows them to make reasonable choices for their patients without being open to the charge of having committed battery. At the same time, we would not allow doctors to abuse this privelege.