Best Advice to Preventing Litigation

Reference:Beckman HB et al The doctor-patient relationship and malpractice. Lessons from plaintiff depositions. Arch Intern Med. 1994 Jun 27;154(12):1365-70.

This study analyzed a number of settled malpractice law suits by patients against their doctors in the USA. They wanted to see what exactly prompted each patient to sue their doctor.

One would assume that “poor health outcome” or “MD negligence” would be the major reasons for deciding to sue. However, this study concluded that the decision to litigate was associated with:

*Perceived lack of caring

*Devaluing patient views

*Discounting patient concerns

*Perceived unavailability

*Poor delivery of information

Based on this analysis, it appears that the majority of litigations may have been prevented if the health care provider had better communication and had been perceived as more caring.

After all, we as health care providers are human and to err is human, but to be perceived as not caring when you err could mean a law suit.

There are few things in life that are more stressful than dealing with a patient complaint or litigation against you. Fortunately PTs have relatively low litigation issues; helping to keep our malpractice insurance premiums low!

Posted on: July 03, 2015

Categories: Fascinating Pain Studies

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