Kahn JH. Emerg Med Clin North Am 2020 - Review.
This article focuses on confidentiality and capacity issues affecting patients receiving care in the emergency department. The patient-physician relationship begins with presumed confidentiality. The article also clarifies instances where a physician may be required to break confidentiality for the safety of patients or others. This article then discusses risk management issues relevant to determining a patient's capacity to accept or decline medical care in the emergency department setting. Situations pertaining to refusal of care and discharges against medical advice are examined in detail, and best practices for mitigating risk in informed consent and barriers to consent are reviewed.