Competency to Give an Informed Consent: A Model for Making Clinical Assessments
Drane, James F.
JAMA. 1984 Aug 17; 252(7): 925-927.
The author proposes a three-level sliding scale for physicians to use in determining the capacity of patients with diminished mental capacities to consent to or refuse treatment. Since his goal is to promote informed and free participation in treatment decisions by competent patients while protecting incompetent patients from the harmful effects of a bad decision, the stringency of the standard of competency at each level is related to the dangerousness of the treatment decision. The three standards are also correlated with the psychiatric abnormalities that are most likely to undermine them. (KIE abstract)
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