Section 9 states the adult must give consent to medical examination and treatment unless he/she lacks capacity or it is an emergency situation and consent cannot be obtained.

Where the situation is not an emergency and it is not possible to obtain the adult’s informed consent due to lack of capacity or they have difficulty communicating in order to provide consent, the council should contact the Office of the Public Guardian to ascertain whether a guardian or attorney has such powers.  If not, consideration may be given to whether it is appropriate to use the provisions in the Adults with Incapacity (Scotland) Act 2000 or the Mental Health (Care and Treatment) Act 2003.

If the adult has been subjected to sexual harm a medical examination may be necessary and this should be arranged by the responsible social work manager in consultation with the Police. 

Where an emergency and where consent cannot be obtained doctors can provide medical treatment to anyone who needs it, provided that the treatment is necessary to save life or avoid significant deterioration in a patient’s health.

For fuller details on medical examinations please refer to:

Adult Support and Protection (Scotland) Act 2007 Part 1 - Codes of Practice April 2022 (Chapter 7)click here