Susan Diamond, Director, MD Consents
The delivery of effective and efficient healthcare is built on the informed consent process. But is this process all about getting the patient’s signature on a piece of paper or is there more? Think again.
Before the treatment, it is the ethical and legal obligation of healthcare professionals to provide patients with the appropriate information about their treatment and obtain “informed consent”. Traditionally, this information was given verbally and consent was obtained on paper during a medical consultation. Because individual healthcare professionals provide treatment information in their own style, there was a considerable scope for inconsistency in the information given to patients; and patient understanding could vary considerably. All of which could potentially invalidate the consent obtained from patients.
With a passion to change the status quo in the informed consent process, MD Consents was founded to address the challenges faced by healthcare professionals and patients during the process. The company has developed a unique online platform that uses engaging videos to provide patients with the medical and legal information required for informed consent. After watching the videos, patients can electronically sign all their relevant consent forms remotely. This has become especially important today as clinics strive to reduce patient visits because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
As consent processes are automated, human errors and their legal consequences are eliminated. The platform provides a robust process in which detailed audit log documents of every activity carried out by staff and patients are stored with a time and date stamp. “Our audit log acts as independent evidence to eliminate the ambiguities in the consent process,” says Susan Diamond, Director of MD Consents.
In the wake of COVID-19, MD Consents has emerged as a blessing for clinics as well as their staff and patients. Clinics using MD Consents’ platform have been able to seamlessly carry out their operations in the new and challenging environment and reduce the disruption to their service.
Tony Marven, CTO and Maria Marven, MD Consents
“Thus, we provide the building blocks for healthcare professionals to build viable telehealth services through which patients can receive care from the comfort of their home,” says Tony Marven, CTO, MD Consents. To support its clients in the COVID-19 times, the company has added new features, such as, ID document verification, as part of its ongoing innovation strategy and commitment to its clients.
Our robust audit log acts as independent evidence to eliminate the ambiguities in the processes
“In February 2019, the Agora Fertility Centre, Brighton UK, implemented Fertility Consent with the aim of moving from the cumbersome, paper-based consent process to an easy to use online system. A year later, as the COVID-19 outbreak took hold, Fertility Consent made a dramatic impact on the clinics’ ability to respond to the situation,” said Dr. Carole Gilling-Smith, CEO, Founder & Medical Director of The Agora.
Many clinics have improved their clinical and business outcomes using the MD Consents’ platform, which aids in gaining a granular understanding of the patient’s condition. For instance, the biggest fertility clinic group in Europe has completely transformed their operations, a move which has been warmly welcomed by their patients. The clinic staff are now able to provide better care in less time while patients gain access to personalized care. As the platform optimizes the process of managing informed consent, clinics have improved their governance, service quality, and business performance.
Moving forward, MD Consents has plans to expand its operations with fertility clinics globally. The company is also working with NHS trusts in the UK to deliver an informed consent platform for other specialist areas. In addition, MD Consents have been approached by other healthcare agencies in the UK to support the informed consent process in dentistry and ophthalmology.