Alex | Founder of Medfully
29 May 3 min read

Consent in Medicine | Medicine Interview Questions & Tips

Alongside the four pillars of medical ethics, the three C’s of medical ethics (confidentiality, consent and capacity) are a foundation

📝 What is Consent in Medicine?

All around the globe, doctors have the ethical and legal duty to gain consent from patients before any medical interventions. This may be oral or may take the form of written consent (which is usually the case for the more serious medical interventions, such as operations or tests). As mentioned above, consent may also be implied.

🏥 Why is Consent important in Medicine?

Consent is vital to ensure nothing is done against patients' will, and that they can feel comfortable and respected, all of which work to increase patients' trust towards healthcare professionals and the NHS.


✅ Consent Done Right:

There are a number of factors that need to be met for consent to be valid. A valid consent has to be:

  • voluntary; this means that it has to be the patient’s genuine decision and that they aren’t coerced by anyone (family member, partner, company) or anything (say, money)
  • competent; this means the patient has to have the capacity to consent and their cognition or decision making isn't impaired (for instance, by drugs or a mental/neurological disease)
  • informed; this means that the patient understands all the outcomes (including treatment options or a lack of treatment), together with the risks and benefits of each of the options

Hence, before giving consent, any procedure, investigation or treatment should always be discussed between the doctor and the patient to ensure all of the above are fulfilled. In case of more serious medical interventions, patients should be given information leaflets and enough time to think the decision through.

⚕️Confidentiality, Capacity & Consent: The 3 C’s of Medical Ethics