Informed consent is a basic component of communication between medical professionals and patients. True informed consent means you fully understand the procedure, intervention, or treatment, that you are aware of all of the risks and benefits, and you have the choice to opt in or opt out. The guidelines for this are defined by organizations like the American Medical Association and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Even though it is a basic tenant of medical care, it isn’t always practiced ideally. There are challenges involved with the time and attention needed to give you true informed consent. As we are seeing a shift to more patient focused practices and a more evidence based approach to care we will hopefully see this become a bigger priority. Until then, this episode gives you some tips in finding the right care provider, how to make sure you are really informed before giving consent for procedures and interventions, and when you know you should switch to a new doctor or midwife.
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