Ways Physicians Can Avoid Malpractice and Injuries
Being served with a medical malpractice lawsuit is one of the most devastating things that can happen in a physician’s career. When the standard of care has been breached, it can be incredibly difficult for a physician to come back from.
Medical malpractice occurs when a hospital or healthcare professional causes injury to a patient, whether through negligence or omission. While fairly common, medical malpractice can lead to devastating results and in some cases even death. Some of the most common types of medical malpractice include:
- Birth Injuries (cerebral palsy, placental abruption, hypoxic brain damage, etc.)
- Misdiagnosis/Failure to Diagnose
- Surgical Errors
- Spinal Injury
- Emergency Room Errors
The relationship between doctor and patient is one that is built on communication and trust. When that trust is broken, the results can be disastrous for both parties. Rather than having to get Pittsburgh malpractice attorneys involved, there are several ways physicians can avoid medical malpractice and keep their patients safe and sound!
Not only is communication between a physician and his or her staff important, but between doctor and patient as well. When a patient is in the care of a healthcare professional, they are trusting that their wellbeing is being looked after. effective communication between doctor and patient is imperative to avoiding medical malpractice and patient injuries. For example, if a patient will be undergoing anesthesia during a procedure, it is absolutely critical that a physician communicates any important information to the patient beforehand, such as not eating or drinking prior to the surgery. Practicing open and honest communication is one of the biggest ways physicians can avoid running into a case of medical malpractice.
This goes hand in hand with effective communication, as it is imperative that a physician has total consent from a patient before performing a procedure. Before any operation or procedure, it is important for a physician to go over all important details with the patient to ensure they understand what to expect. When it comes to informed consent, it is crucial to not only explain any possible risks and complications to the patient verbally, but have them sign the necessary paperwork as well. Signing consent forms protects both parties from any possible miscommunication, so be sure to thoroughly go over exactly what will happen before, during, and after a patient is in your care to avoid medical malpractice.
Another way a medical malpractice lawsuit can be avoided is by providing adequate follow-up procedures to patients. When waiting for test results, for example, it is important that doctors follow-up on the status of these results to ensure that the necessary steps are taken. Failure to follow-up regarding something like test results can lead to devastating consequences, as the patient will not be receiving the proper treatment and care. To avoid this, physicians should use due diligence and make sure to practice proper follow-up when treating patients.