A video made by a surgeon training at Warwick Hospital highlighting the importance of informed patient consent has won a national competition.
The Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh’s (RCSE) Annual Communication Skills Competition sees medical students and surgical trainees from the UK and abroad submit videos of themselves roleplaying challenging situations in which the relaying of information is crucial.
The competition is part of the RCSE’s ongoing promotion of communication in healthcare.
Ellen Jerome, who is 29, and currently training in general surgery at Warwick Hospital, teamed up with Samir Salih, a surgical trainee at Royal Cornwall Hospital in Truro, for their video.
The video entry, ‘Informed Consent: in a Patient’s Shoes’ was selected as the first placed entry. The video states the importance of doctors and surgeons introducing themselves to patients; assessing a patient’s prior knowledge of their condition and upcoming procedure; using visual aids; avoiding complicated jargon and offering the opportunity to ask questions. It emphasises the message that with understanding comes patient empowerment and trust.
Ellen said: “It is important that doctors, as well as patients, are confident that informed consent has been obtained before a surgical procedure is carried out. From a doctor’s perspective, it is crucial that you are confident you are carrying out a procedure on someone who is fully aware of the benefits and risks.
“We hope that our video makes it clear how best to inform a patient about their condition, their options and the potential outcomes. We are delighted to have won the competition, and we hope that our video helps other trainees ascertain when they have truly obtained informed consent.”