Perceptions of Informed Consent in the Care of Elderly People in Five European Countries
Scott, P. Anne
International and Political Dimensions of Biology and Medicine
Health Care Programs for the Aged
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AbstractThe focus of this article is on elderly patients' and nursing staff perceptions of informed consent in the care of elderly patients/residents in five European countries. The results suggest that patients and nurses differ in their views on how informed consent is implemented. Among elderly patients the highest frequency for securing informed consent was reported in Finland; the lowest was in Germany. In contrast, among nurses, the highest frequency was reported in the UK (Scotland) and the lowest in Finland. In a comparison of patients' and nurses' perceptions, nurses had more positive views than patients in all countries except Finland. Patients with less need for nursing interventions in Greece and Spain gave their consent less often. The German and Greek patients were older, and the results also point to an association between this and their lower frequency of giving consent. In Spain, patients who were married or who had a family member or friend to look after their personal affairs were more likely to be included in the group whose consent was sought less often. This is the fourth of a set of five articles published together in this issue of Nursing Ethics in which the results of this comparative research project are presented.
Nursing Ethics 2003 January; 10(1): 48-57