The threat of malpractice lingers over the head of every doctor in the practice – a tiny mistake here and there, voila, a lawsuit appears almost seemingly out of thin air. It takes a good connection with patients to mitigate the risk of getting sued. This requires a healthy habit of communicating and keeping a friendly demeanor, making you approachable in the eyes of your clientele. Avoid medical malpractice lawsuits by keeping the following five tips in mind:
- Patient Relationships Begin With Trust – Just like any relationship, trust is key when it comes to doctors and patients. You can lay a good foundation of trust by spending time with and really listening to what your patients have to say. The idea is to be compassionate towards their needs – after all, your purpose is to be there for them. When it is your turn to talk, take time to explain things in layman’s terms as not everyone is equipped to understand medical science the way doctors do. Answer any and all of their questions to the best of your ability to make sure they really have a good grip on the situation.
- Always Get Consent – Failing to get signed consent from patients is sloppy behavior and can put you at great risk of getting sued. Ensure that patients understand the reasons behind certain treatment and recovery plans as well as the risks that may exist behind them. Inform them about all the possible alternatives they have. Once they have a good grasp of their options, let them decide what the best course for them is – then have them sign a document that confirms that they have consented to the treatment.
- Record Everything During Patient Visits – Avoiding malpractice lawsuits is all about making the most out of your time spent with a patient. During appointments and patient consultations, write everything that happens down as you go. Make sure the direction of conversation leads to establishing an accurate assessment and treatment plan and back your findings up with observations on lab test results. Failure to do so will look bad in a courtroom setting.
- Ensure Documentation Is Complete & Organized – Once all your documentation is accounted for, organize them and keep them accessible and easy to find when you need them. These documents will serve as proof of your sound medical analysis and provide the court with the reasoning behind any medical treatment or procedure in question. If you do not have these intact, you will not be able to explain yourself in court properly and will leave you open to liability.
- Remain HIPAA Compliant – Stay on top of HIPAA’s regulatory compliance and you should steer clear of many forms of legal trouble. Do this by exercising the utmost respect for other people’s privacy – never talk about or show anybody’s private health information to anyone not directly involved in that patient’s care. Then you could either set up your own complex data privacy framework or outsource it to an expert that can keep you compliant while sparing you the headache of doing it yourself.
Qualified medical evaluators in California – you do not need to lose sleep and sanity just to make sure you remain compliant with HIPAA on your medical reports and evaluations. Get in touch with TukkoMed and discover how we can make your life much easier at a rate that is agreeable.