GOP proposal would change informed consent law

Emergency rooms see uptick in patients during holidays

Doctors wouldn’t have to give patients as much information about alternative treatments under a Republican-sponsored bill in the Legislature.

It’s a reaction to a Wisconsin Supreme Court ruling that said a doctor’s “informed consent” duty includes telling a patient about tests and treatments that may be appropriate for a patient’s symptoms — even if the doctor doesn’t believe the patient has the underlying condition or disease.

The ruling stemmed from the case of a man diagnosed with Bell’s palsy. His doctor ordered tests to rule out one kind of stroke, but didn’t order another that might have detected a different kind of stroke that he suffered 11 days later.

GOP Rep. Jim Ott said expanded consent will increase medical costs. Democrats said it would be a disservice to patients.