Risk Management Articles
The Health Care Provider’s Simple Guide to Responding to a Board of Healing Arts Complaint

The letter appears to be an innocuous business letter in a non-descript envelope. The text is usually passive in tone, asking you to respond to what is normally a one-page handwritten complaint by a disgruntled former patient. It would be easy to view it as a casual request to be dealt with in a casual […]

“Altogether Now” – The Necessity of Practice-Wide Policies and Procedures

Most physicians and other medical professionals have developed “their” way of doing things over the course of their careers, and changing those practices can be difficult. However, when it comes to operating a successful, and claims-free, medical practice, uniformity is required. Effective policies and procedures are needed to ensure everyone understands what is expected of […]

Document Your Way Out of a Claim

If it isn’t written, it wasn’t done.   Nowhere is this maxim more applicable than medical charting. However, these days documenting a visit in the usual SOAP format (Subjective, Objective, Assessment, Plan) may not be enough, as adroit plaintiffs’ attorneys fill in blanks in the charting with explanations far from your thought process, but believable […]

Communication is the Key: Take Small Steps to Avoid Big Problems

You have surely heard it several times: patients who believe they have a good relationship with their physician are considerably less likely to sue in the event of an adverse outcome. But a physician need not spend hours with each patient, have a stunning personality or exhibit world-class bedside manner to be held in high […]

Dealing with an Adverse Event: Saying “I’m sorry” Without Admitting Fault

Adverse events are bound to occur over the course of a physician’s career. If a procedure does not go as anticipated or your patient develops an unforeseen complication, you may not know how best to address the situation with the patient and the patient’s family. Undeniably, the fear of litigation can also be a factor […]