I work on an adolescent (13-17 years) unit. A question has come up about the medication consents for psychoactive medications. For all patients under the age of 16, we must have the consent of the parent or guardian.
Some people have had the parent signing a blank consent. I've questioned this, feeling that it was not legally a prudent thing to do. In talking with other staff, they agree, but our manager has asked us what is wrong with it.
Does anyone have any input, or sources that would help me support our stand - other than you don't sign a legal form with blank lines.
Thanks for your help.
Nov 9, '02
I suppose these same people sign blank checks and mail them in to pay their phone bills as well? Nothing illegal about it, just stupid. It WOULD, however, be illegal for your facility to encourage or demand that people sign blank forms. Any attorney has some training in contract law and could explain this to your managers. Presumably your facility has one on retainer.
Psychnurse is corrrect about what constitutes informed consent, and that it is up to the MD to do any necessary explaining, education, etc. Apparently this is not done in your facility and could leave it open to subsequent lawsuits, however foolish the signatories are.
Last edit by sjoe on Nov 9, '02