Physicians' knowledge and patients' understanding of informed consent: challenges in clinical practice

AUTHORS : Kumar Manisha1 , Asmita2 , Bhavya HU3
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To assess physicians’ knowledge and to find out its understanding in patients. Method: 120 physicians and 280 patients were given separate questionnaires to assess their knowledge and understanding of informed consent. Results: 52.3% respondents took less than 10 minutes in taking consent. There was significant difference in providing information about length of hospital stay among junior (57.1%) and senior doctors (88%). Among 266 patients who responded, 102 (28%) were illiterate (group I) and 164 (72%) were literate (group II). In the group I 13.7% knew that consent needs to be taken before the procedure, whereas in group II 50% were aware. 40.2 % among the illiterate group, and 80% of the literate group understood the contents of consent, The anxiety level after consents increased rather than decreasing. Conclusion: All components of consent were not communicated to the patients by the physicians. Patients’ literacy level increased the understanding of consent.

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