You worked hard to be a doctor and are dedicated to offering quality services to your patients. However, a patient may sue you for medical malpractice due to a misunderstanding. In such a case, you will need to employ defense strategies to protect your reputation and possibly your career.
Documentation is crucial in defending yourself. Here are three documents you need:
You should have all the records since you started treating the patient, especially those concerning the case. For example, if a patient accuses you of misdiagnosis, present all the tests you performed to make your conclusion.
If you are accused of a surgical error, perhaps the patient has had a side effect, give records that indicate you discussed with the patient the possible risks of the procedure, the particular side effect included, during the consent process.
Physicians who discuss issues with patients but don’t write them down can be in a lot of trouble if they are ever in a medical malpractice claim. You should have notes about anything you discussed with your patient that may not be included in the medical records.
Any contact with a patient should be documented. If you spoke with your patent over the phone, you should provide the notes of what you discussed. For example, if the patient complained of pain and you indicated so and the solution you offered in your notes, present them as evidence.
However, it may not be wise to review your medical records, charts and notes sooner. The other side may question your rush.
Any doctor, including experienced ones, can be accused of medical malpractice. If this happens, you should learn about the defenses that can apply in your case.