Bioethics News

Informed Patient? Don’t Bet on It

March 1, 2017

(New York Times) – The secret is that informed consent in health care is commonly not-so-well informed. It might be a document we ask you to sign, at the behest of our lawyers, in case we end up in court if a bad outcome happens. Unfortunately, it’s often not really about informing you. In schools, teachers determine what students know through tests and homework. The standard is not whether the teacher has explained how to add, but instead whether the student can add. If we were truly invested in whether you were informed, we’d give you a quiz, or at least ask you to repeat back to us what you heard so we could assess its accuracy.

The views, opinions and positions expressed by these authors and blogs are theirs and do not necessarily represent that of the Bioethics Research Library and Kennedy Institute of Ethics or Georgetown University.