Are you aware that you may have unknowingly delegated your parental rights when you signed this year’s medical consent authorization forms?
I know I almost did.
Tis that time of year. Summer is winding down. Preseason has started. Summer reading needs to get done as do the prerequisite medical forms.
After about 10 reminders from the nurse’s office, I finally sat down to check this off my “to do” list. I downloaded and plowed through the miscellaneous authorizations. Consent to give Tylenol and other over the counter meds. For my family that is a no, but not a biggie. Nothing unusual. The health history from the doctor. Check. Then came the form granting authority in case of emergency. Ok, but at the end of the consent form there was an additional consent for non emergencies that I had never noticed before.
I had to read it several times to fully grasp the meaning. I went to law school and although I have not practiced law in over 20 years, with or without a law degree, the language seemed pretty self explanatory.
CONSENT TO MEDICAL TREATMENT FOR STUDENT BY THE MEDICAL DEPT.
I hereby authorize the Health Center to administer medical care and treatment to the above named student and hereby consent to any medical care and treatment, including but not limited to the administration of medication and immunizations and referrals for psychiatric counseling or other medical care, including hospital inpatient and outpatient care. I further authorize School and any licensed physician retained by School to release medical records and/or information pertaining to the diagnosis or treatment of the above-named student when such disclosure is necessary for purpose of evaluation, treatment and any other supportive service to be provided to the above-named student or is necessary to complete a claim for health insurance.
By signing this consent, I would have relinquished all parental rights to my child! If the medical department, who ever that turns out to be as it is left completely undefined or if the school decides my child needs medication, or vaccines or even needs to be committed to a psychiatric institution, by signing this form, I would have given them the legal authority to do so and relinquished any say in the matter.
Not fully trusting my legal abilities to read a document, I contacted my lawyer and sought his counsel. After suggesting perhaps they forgot to include language in this paragraph, (not likely) he confirmed I was right to be alarmed. God forbid your kid is committed to psychiatric care, good luck getting him or her out is what he said.
Am I paranoid? Will this ever happen to my child? Would the school ever take such extreme measures? Probably not, but I read a ton on the Internet and I often read stories of medical kidnappings or states vaccinating children in school nurses’ offices with parents finding out after the fact.
Regardless where you stand on these issues, the bottom line is that in our democratic country, our democratic society where our rights mean everything, to slip in a provision which essentially agrees to waive our rights as parents or delegate our authority carte blanche, not just due to an emergency, is egregious and cause for alarm.
Please be aware. This language was only on the forms of one of the schools my kids attend, but not the other. But if I were you, I would double check because as much as we like to believe this could never happen to us, we tend to hold that belief until, it does.
Just read some of these articles of medical kidnapping.
Not to be a drama queen, but by signing this consent “as is” which I am sure most of the parents in my son’s school did, I would have been granting permission for some unspecified medical department or the school to do just that… in effect to medically kidnap my child.