Who is responsible for obtaining patient consent?

The dental professional who has drawn up a patient’s treatment plan should usually obtain the initial consent. If this is not practical, you may delegate the discussion to someone else, as long as they are suitably trained and qualified and understand the proposed treatment and its risks.

Bear in mind that the GDC views consent as a process rather than a one-off event and expects other members of the dental team to play their part. For example, a dentist could obtain consent for a referral to a hygienist, but the hygienist should also be satisfied the patient understands what is involved with treatment and has given their consent.

This guidance was correct at publication 22/08/2016. It is intended as general guidance for members only. If you are a member and need specific advice relating to your own circumstances, please contact one of our advisers.

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