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Background and Aims There are well established procedures for obtaining and documenting informed consent for surgical procedures. Anaesthetic procedures, lack the same standardized approach. This has safety implications for patients and clinicians. We sought to evaluate the patient experience of those who underwent regional anaesthesia (RA) within our department.
Methods Following approval from our audit committee, we conducted a twelve-part telephone survey with thirty patients regarding their experience of RA.The survey explored the circumstances under which patients were consented, and their recall of the information provided.
Results Of the total number of patients interviewed (n=30), seventy percent (21) believed the NB was compulsory. Sixty percent (18) could not recall any of the possible advantages of receiving a NB and eighty percent (24) could not recall any risks. Sixty-six percent (20) of patients were consented for a NB in the holding bay. Sixteen percent (5) were consented in the induction room. Sixty percent (20) of patients said they would have valued written information regarding the NB. A majority (17) felt they did not have adequate time to consider the NB.Currently there is no formalized process that exists within our department for documentation of the risks and benefits discussed with patients. The practise of which can therefore vary greatly amongst practitioners.
Conclusions Our results demonstrate a paucity of information that is either delivered to, or retained by, our patients with regards to receiving RA. We aim to distribute a Patient information leaflet to better achieve informed consent from our patients.
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