Capacity to Consent to Treatment

The capacity to consent to treatment, also known as treatment consent capacity (TCC) and medical decisionmaking capacity, is a civil legal capacity with important ethical, legal, and functional aspects. TCC is a fundamental aspect of personal autonomy and selfdetermination and refers to a person's cognitive and emotional capacity to consent to medical treatment. TCC involves the capacity not only to accept a treatment but also to refuse a treatment, or to select between treatment alternatives. Legally, TCC forms the cornerstone of the medical-legal doctrine of informed consent, which requires that a valid consent to treatment be not only informed and voluntary but also competent. Functionally, TCC may be viewed as an “advanced activity of daily life” that is an important aspect of health and independent ...

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