Reconsideration of its
Structure and Role in
Institute for Human Studies in Medicine, First Medical Faculty,
Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic
This chapter deals with informed consent as a new and rather complicated structure of social relations between doctor and patient. Medicine has developed it quite recently, and this brief history, with some putative reasons for the delay, are mentioned first, then informed consent is analyzed and divided into three levels of decision-making. It must be taken into account that informed consent is a dilemma, and that there is thus no proper general decision valid for every case.
Keywords: Autonomy; Decision-making; Dilemma; Informed consent
The concept known as “informed consent” did not emerge until the second half of the twentieth century and, as historians suggest, the professional
Pharmaceutical Ethics. Edited by S. Salek and A. Edgar.
© 2002 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.