Risk Management Tools & Resources

 

CASE STUDY: Improper Performance of Sinus Surgery

A patient in her mid-sixties presented to her ENT physician with complaints of chronic sinusitis and a 3-month history of headache with facial pain and swelling, as well as purulent nasal discharge. A CT scan revealed a deviated septum, and a subsequent fiber optic exam identified a right-sided sinus blockage.

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How Does Telemedicine Change the Informed Consent Process?

Informed consent — a process that is used to educate patients about the potential benefits, risks, and alternatives to proposed treatments — is a crucial component of a patient's right to make decisions about his/her healthcare. As MedPro Group's Risk Management Strategies for Informed Consent guideline explains, "Any procedure that presents the possibility of material harm to a patient should not be undertaken until the informed consent process has been completed."

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CASE STUDY: Failures in Communication and Management of Care Result in Poor Patient Outcome

The patient, a 66-year-old Hispanic male who did not speak English, was referred to a MedPro-insured ophthalmologist (Dr. A) by his regular optometrist (Dr. B) for evaluation of early cataracts. During the patient's appointment, Dr. A relied on her very limited Spanish proficiency to communicate with the patient instead of using an interpreter.

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Who Is Responsible for Informed Consent?

The informed consent process is a nondelegable duty that physicians, dentists, and other practitioners must perform through discussions with patients. Healthcare providers should obtain consent from patients — or in certain cases, patients' authorized representatives — for proposed surgeries, procedures, or treatments that patients will undergo.

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Risk Management Basics for Informed Consent

Informed consent is a general principle of law that imposes a duty on healthcare providers to disclose to patients the information they need to intelligently make healthcare-related decisions. The basis of informed consent centers on the principle of autonomy, which recognizes an individual's right to make decisions regarding his/her healthcare.

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When Patient Phobias Turn Into Medical Emergencies

Patient anxiety or fear related to medical or dental treatment can be problematic and concerning in various ways. These fears may manifest as noncompliance with treatment protocols or appointments schedules, behavioral issues, or — in extreme cases — medical emergencies.

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Ready, Set, Action — Managing a Medical Emergency When It Occurs

Preparing for medical emergencies requires time and resources, but the results can prove significant. When a medical emergency occurs, healthcare providers and staff members must be ready to quickly implement their emergency response plan.

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Managing Medical Emergencies: Equipment and Supplies

Preparation is an essential element of emergency preparedness for healthcare practices and facilities. One important aspect of preparing for medical emergencies is procuring and maintaining appropriate equipment and supplies (including medications). Medical and dental professional organizations and emergency preparedness literature generally recommend that office practices maintain at least basic emergency equipment and supplies.

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