Informed Consent and Patients' Rights in Japan: 2001 Epilogue

Robert B Leflar, Nihon no Iryō to Hō: Infōmudo Konsento Runessansu [Law and Health Care in Japan: The Renaissance of Informed Consent] (Tokyo: Keiso Shobo, 2002) (in Japanese) (M. Nagasawa, trans.): Epilogue (pp. 241-258)

19 Pages Posted: 4 Aug 2012

See all articles by Robert B Leflar

Robert B Leflar

National Taiwan University; University of Arkansas School of Law

Date Written: December 16, 2001

Abstract

Japan is on a steeper trajectory toward the incorporation of informed consent principles into medical practice than the “gradual transformation” observed in a 1996 article, Informed Consent and Patients’ Rights in Japan. Among the most significant recent developments from 1996 to 2001 have been these seven: (1) the 1997 enactment of the Organ Transplantation Law permitting the use of brain death criteria in limited circumstances in which informed consent is present; (2) the strengthening of patients’ rights in clinical drug trials; (3) the continued trend toward increasing disclosure to patients of cancer diagnoses; (4) initiatives by the health ministry toward recognition of patients’ rights at a measured pace; (5) increasing public concern about medical error and patients’ rights; (6) the gradual, grudging acceptance by the medical establishment of aspects of patients’ rights in the areas of informed consent and access to medical records; and (7) most important as a legal matter, the recognition by the Supreme Court of Japan of the right to accurate advance information about physicians’ treatment intentions concerning life-and-death decisions during surgery, enabling the patient to reject the proposed treatment if she chooses.

Keywords: Informed consent, Japan, medical records, organ transplants, brain death, clinical trials, cancer disclosure, informed refusal, patients' rights

JEL Classification: I18, K13, K32, N45

Suggested Citation

Leflar, Robert B, Informed Consent and Patients' Rights in Japan: 2001 Epilogue (December 16, 2001). Robert B Leflar, Nihon no Iryō to Hō: Infōmudo Konsento Runessansu [Law and Health Care in Japan: The Renaissance of Informed Consent] (Tokyo: Keiso Shobo, 2002) (in Japanese) (M. Nagasawa, trans.): Epilogue (pp. 241-258), Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2123262

Robert B Leflar (Contact Author)

National Taiwan University ( email )

No.1, Sec.4, Roosevelt Road
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Taiwan
14794667406 (Phone)

University of Arkansas School of Law ( email )

1495 S. Finger Road
1045 W. Maple St.
Fayetteville, AR 72701
United States
14794667406 (Phone)

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