Checklist for Surgery / Consent Forms / Insurance Information

Checklist for surgery:

The decision to have surgery is a very important one. You will need to be fully informed and prepared for the surgery, as well as for any special needs that you may have following the surgery. Your preparation will affect the outcome and the results. The following is a checklist to assist you in your preparation for surgery:

What is an informed consent form?

Prior to surgery, you will receive a careful explanation of the procedure, its purpose, any risks, and the expected outcome. You may also be asked to sign an "informed consent" form, which states in detail that you understand everything involved with your surgery. You should read through the consent carefully before signing it. If you have any questions or need more information, ask your physician.

What are advance directives?

In certain surgeries, where significant risks are involved, hospital staff may encourage you to prepare "advance directives." Advance directives are legal documents that state a patient's preference in treatment and resuscitation - if the patient is unable to speak for himself or herself. There are two types of advance directives:

What about minors consent to medical care?

Parental consent is required for any diagnostic procedure or surgery on a pre-adolescent child. However, "emancipated" adolescents may consent to their own medical care. An emancipated adolescent is someone who meets any of the following criteria:

What happens when the adult patient cannot consent?

Sometimes an adult patient cannot make decisions (temporarily or permanently) about medical care, either because of accidental unconsciousness, confusion due to old age, or severe illness. In those instances, a family member will be asked to make any necessary medical decisions.

Insurance information:

After a patient is diagnosed and surgery is recommended, most insurance companies require "precertification" from the physician's office before allowing a patient to undergo the procedure. Please check with your insurance carrier on the appropriate steps to take. Some insurance companies also require patients to pay a co-payment for the hospital stay.

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