Proxy consent is the process by which people with the legal right to consent to
medical treatment for themselves or for a minor or a ward delegate that right
to another person. There are three fundamental constraints on this delegation:
1. The person making the delegation must have the right to consent.
2. The person must be legally and medically competent to delegate the right to
3. The right to consent must be delegated to a legally and medically competent
There are two types of proxy consent for adults. The first, the power of
attorney to consent to medical care, is usually used by patients who want
medical care but are concerned about who will consent if they are rendered
temporarily incompetent by the medical care. A power of attorney to consent
to medical care delegates the right to consent to a specific person. The second
type is the living will.