Consent to Treatment Policy

Applicable to: This policy is applicable to all health service providers excluding Health Support Services.

DescriptionConsent to treatment is a patient’s agreement for a health practitioner to proceed with a proposed treatment. All patients have the right to make an informed decision about proposed treatments, except in very limited circumstances. Unless an exception applies, health practitioners must be satisfied that they have a patient’s consent before providing treatment.

The purpose of this policy is to:

  • set out key underlying legal principles relevant to consent
  • ensure there is a consistent approach in seeking and documenting consent to treatment across the WA health system
  • support a collaborative healthcare culture that encourages patients and their families to ask questions, be presented with information about treatment options (including to take no action), have their choices heard and respected by health practitioners and involve their family/loved ones in discussions as they choose.

Legislation pertinent to this policy includes:

  • Children and Community Services Act 2004
  • Civil Liability Act 2002
  • Commonwealth Family Law Act 1975
  • Criminal Code
  • Guardianship and Administration Act 1990
  • Human Tissue and Transplant Act 1982
  • Mental Health Act 2014
  • Electronic Transactions Act 2011.

This policy is consistent with the consent process and obligations contained within the following documents: 

This policy is a mandatory requirement under the Clinical Governance, Safety and Quality Policy Framework pursuant to section 26(2)(d) of the Health Services Act 2016.

This policy supersedes OD 0657/16 WA Health Consent to Treatment policy.

Voluntary Assisted Dying sits outside the scope of this policy, please refer to MP 0154/21 Managing Voluntary Assisted Dying Policy.

Date of effect: 13 March 2023

Policy Framework

Related documents

Supporting information