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[Comment] How Montgomery is reconfiguring consent in the UK

How should consent be measured? The answer to that question will depend on where in the world you practise medicine or receive treatment—whether it be in a patient-centred health-care service like in Australia or a more consumer-driven system such as in the USA. In the UK, the validity of consent was until recently based on whether a reasonable body of medical opinion would agree with it—a principle widely known as the Bolam test.1 However, in a 2015 ruling involving a case of birth complicated by shoulder dystocia that resulted in a child being born with cerebral palsy (Montgomery v Lanarkshire Health Board 2015),2 the UK Supreme Court declared the Bolam test to be an outdated instance of medical paternalism.

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