Search form

Sections

When Patients Sue Doctors: How Communication Could Help

When Patients Sue Doctors: How Communication Could Help

Some months ago, the receptionist in my clinic handed me a registered letter. The name of the sender seemed familiar. "Dear Sir," the letter read. "Please be advised that this letter serves as official notice that I am considering a potential claim against you in a medical Malpractice claim in regard to my husband. . . ." I stood, stunned. My white coat, which held the daily tools of my profession - my list of patients, the Sanford antibiotic manual, a black stethoscope - felt extraordinarily heavy.

While my receptionist and staff made themselves busy and waited for my reaction, I struggled to recall the patient, so many patients ago . . . and my alleged misdeed. I checked the administrative data, which showed that the man had died about a year before. Had I missed a lab test among the hundreds that I order each week? Had I failed to read a blood culture report? Had some error of mine resulted in his death?

Continue reading about my personal experience with our medical malpractice system - and how simple communication might help -- at The Washington Post.

Leave A Comment

Announcements

Thanks to groundbreaking new research, we can now see how much private insurance plans are paying for common procedures and per person in communities across the U.S. This webinar will help journalists and policy makers contextualize the private-payer data, discuss possible policy responses, and offer suggestions for how reporters can use this resource to bolster their reporting. Register here.

Interested in learning more about the health, education and social challenges children face as a result of poverty and adversity?  Apply now for the 2016 National Health Journalism Fellowship, which comes with $2,000-$10,000 reporting grant, five days of intensive all-expenses-paid traing in L.A., and six months of mentoring. Details here.

CONNECT WITH THE COMMUNITY

Member Activities

Michelle Levander has shared a blog post

Read it.

Anna Romano has shared a blog post

Read it.

Elizabeth Vorrasi joined the community

Connect with Elizabeth Vorrasi

Doug Levy joined the community

Connect with Doug Levy

Mia Foreman's profile has been updated

Connect with Mia Foreman
More Member Activities

Follow Us

ReportingHealth