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Understanding Informed Consent for Active Duty Military & Military Medical Beneficiaries (PDF)

December 01, 2013

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Share this resource using its short link: www.healthlawyers.org/MilitaryInformedConsent

Most of us understand what “informed consent” means in the context of seeking medical treatment at our local hospital. The process of informed consent for active duty military, however, may include limited exceptions given the unique situation in which servicemen and women find themselves, especially during deployments. These limited exceptions, for example, might involve a commanding officer deciding that one of his or her service members needs to be assessed for mental health or psychiatric issues or that the service member be treated with the anthrax vaccine. This guidebook will help military families better understand the informed consent process when receiving medical treatment while at home or during deployment. It will also cover the basics from explaining what is involved in giving sufficient informed consent, situations that may allow treatment even though one has not provided informed consent; how the process is different for those in active service; and whether service members can refuse all or certain types of treatment.

The following audiences may find this resource helpful:

  • Active duty military personnel
  • Spouses and other family members of active duty servicemen/women
  • Legal Assistance Divisions for the US Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, and National Guard
  • Judge Advocates General

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