April 2019 Bar Bulletin
By Paul Luvera
“Knowledge is power, and information is liberating.”
— Kofi Annan
In Washington, a healthcare provider has a fiduciary duty to disclose relevant facts about the patient’s condition and the proposed course of treatment so that the patient may exercise the right to make an informed healthcare decision. This informed consent doctrine is based on “the individual’s right to ultimately control what happens to his body.”1
The doctrine refers generally to medical tort cases that depend, not on the appropriateness or inappropriateness of the doctor’s diagnosis and treatment of the patient’s condition, but on the patient’s right...