Explain what steps to take if consent cannot be readily established

Qualification: Level 2 Diploma in Adult Care
Unit name: Implement Person-Centred Approaches in Care Settings
Learning outcome: 3. Be able to establish consent when providing care or support
Assessment criteria: 3.3 Explain what steps to take if consent cannot be readily established

There will be occasions when you are unable to readily establish consent from an individual before carrying out a care activity or action.


If an individual refuses to give their consent, you must respect their wishes – principles of person-centred care include respect, rights and choice.

However, it may be that they do not fully understand the information that you have provided, so you could explain it again, highlighting the pros and cons of the activity. Another possibility would be to leave them and return a little later to ask for consent again or request that one of your co-workers ask instead.


You should always make a record when an individual refuses to give their consent and you may need to seek guidance from your manager, especially if the activity is important to the individual’s health and wellbeing. You may also seek advice from the individual’s family or advocate. There may be occasions where an individual’s capacity to consent is compromised, so legal recourse may be required so that a decision can be made in their best interests by others on their behalf.

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