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  1. A Ågård,
  2. G Hermerén,
  3. J Herlitz

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Professor Doyal's viewpoint commented on a number of articles on the topic of patient consent that appeared in a recent issue of Heart (vol 86, No 6). We invited the authors of those articles to respond to Professor Doyle's comments, and below is the reply from one group.


Are good clinical practice and informed consent inseparable? This depends, to some extent at least, on what is meant by “inseparable”. Does this refer to a logical relation, on the assumption that “good clinical practice” by definition includes informed consent, to an empirical generalisation about current medical practice, or a normative statement about how it ought to be? Different arguments pro and contra are relevant depending on whether the statement is interpreted as a logical statement, an empirical generalisation, or as a normative statement.

We do not dispute the moral ground for the requirement of informed consent in general,1 and we …

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