Editor’s note: This is part two of a two-part column. Look for the first part in the October 2019 issue of ASC Focus.
In rare situations, the duration of the informed consent could present an issue. Some state laws presume that a written authorization signed by the patient is valid. Some states might specify the time frame in which consent remains valid; others require that consent be obtained no more than 30 days from the procedure. Therefore, checking state regulations is essential. For example, Florida’s consent statute does not contain any date restrictions, while Georgia law, with some nuances, states that a consent is valid for 30 days. Overall, however, the informed consent process includes discussion of the risk and rewards based upon the history and physical condition of the patient at the time the procedure will be performed. The validity of a consent form executed a week prior to the procedure could be challenged if the patient’s condition at the time of the procedure changed the risks involved with the procedure.