Sep 6, 2018

Doctors cannot treat patients without their consent

Particularly if that treatment is of a radical nature such as surgery or blood transfusion.‬ .

In the above case, the deceased, Mrs. Martha Okorie and her husband belonged to a religious sect known as Jehovah's witnesses who believe that blood transfusion is contrary to God's injunction. Mrs Okorie, a 29 year old woman, having had a delivery at a maternity on 29th July, 1991 was admitted as a patient at Kenayo Specialist Hospital for a period of 9 days where the diagnosis disclosed a severe ailment and blood transfusion was recommended. 

The patient and the husband refused to give their consent to blood transfusion. Dr. Okafor of the Hospital consequently discharged the patient on the request of the husband. Upon her discharge from Kenayo Hospital, she was taken to JENO Hospital by her husband where Dr. Okonkwo, the respondent proceeded to treat the patient without transfusing blood.  

Case law via Law Companion (Download in your App Store) 

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