Can an obstetrician perform adrug test withouttheir patient’sconsent?

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Can an obstetrician perform adrug test withouttheir patient’sconsent?

I went to a new OB for a pregnancy confirmation visit at 5 weeks. When giving my urine, I was under the impression it was for a pregnancy test. At no point in the visit was I informed a drug test would be performed. A week later, I got a bill for $500 worth of drug tests. I called and my doctor’s office says this is their standard for everyone to ensure the baby’s health. I dispute this because: A) I was never informed, and B) It is impractical to do this test at a time when 1 in 4 pregnancies end in miscarriage and I am still within my legal right to abort it. Was this legal?

Asked on July 26, 2011 Maryland

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Whether or not your new OB does drug screening tests of all patients as his or her custom and practice is not really the main issue that I see. The issue is whether or not your new treating physician should have informed you orally and in writing as to all intended tests upon your person and the applicable charges for the tests before the testing was done.

From what you have written, it seems that what was done without advising you beforehand was performed as a means of increaisng your medical bill presumably to be charged to your medical insurance carrier.

To establish whether or not this drug screening when done was acceptable with the custom and practice of an OB, you need to consult with other OB's as to their practices during initial pregnancy confirmation and testing to establish health of the unborn child at a certain gestation period of the mother.

I see why you feel that your privacy and trust have been violated.


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