If a patient presents in an emergency situation, is unconscious, mentally incapable, and with no family available, and no advanced directive in place, it is considered reasonable to treat the patient. It is assumed that under these conditions, the patient would consent to treat.
If there is a language barrier, and the patient is otherwise capable of giving consent, a reasonable effort must be made to find an interpretor, which includes using the ones through the phone companies. If the patient's life is in danger, and there is nobody who can communicate with them, then with careful documentation, treatment can be delivered.
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