Risk Management Articles
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 […]

Medical Record Documentation: Do’s and Don’ts

Contributed by Peter Spataro and Morgan Murphy, Brown & James, P.C. If your patient suffers complications and decides to file a lawsuit against you, your medical records will come under intense scrutiny. The saying goes, “hope for the best; prepare for the worst.” A thorough medical record is the best way to prepare for “the […]

The Consequences of Patients Dictating Treatment

One of the challenges for doctors is handling a wide variety of personalities – some patients are entirely trusting while others second-guess everything. The interrelationship between physician and patient is certainly affected by the personalities of both.   In some cases, patients do not wish to follow the advice and recommendations of their doctor. Rather, […]