P_CIG_05 Consent to Examination or Treatment
Patients have a fundamental legal and ethical right to determine what happens to their own bodies and how information about them is used. Valid consent to treatment is therefore absolutely central in all forms of healthcare, from providing personal care to undertaking major surgery. Seeking consent is also a matter of common courtesy between health professionals and patients.
The Department of Health has issued a range of guidance documents on consent and these should be consulted for details of the law and good practice requirements on consent. This policy sets out the standards and procedures for use in Lincolnshire Community Health Services, which aim to ensure that health professionals are able to comply with the guidance. While this document is primarily concerned with healthcare, social care colleagues should also be aware of their obligations to obtain consent before providing certain forms of social care, such as those that involve touching the patient or client.