Outpatient Surgery Magazine - Subscribers

Focused Factories - November 2015 - Outpatient Surgery Magazine

Outpatient Surgery Magazine, providing current information on Surgical Services, Surgical Facility Administration, Outpatient Surgery News and Trends, OR Excellence and more.

Issue link: http://magazine.outpatientsurgery.net/i/596718

Contents of this Issue

Navigation

Page 35 of 154

3 6 O U T P A T I E N T S U R G E R Y M A G A Z I N E O N L I N E | N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 5 Could Your Front Desk Get You Sued? Be careful who's dispensing advice to patients. C ould your front desk staff be a medical malpractice risk? They can be if they're dis- pensing medical advice to patients over the phone, as a recent case illus- trates. Faulty diagnosis An appellate court recently ruled that when a medical assistant gives faulty medical advice to patients, it could qualify as ordinary negligence — not medical malpractice — making it much easier for patients to sue you and win. This decision came from a case involving a woman who underwent an endometrial cryoablation in an OB- GYN's clinic. A few days after the pro- cedure, the patient was experiencing increased pain in her abdomen, which also radiated to her back. She called the doctor's office and spoke to an unlicensed medical assistant manning the front desk. The assistant listened to the patient's description of her symptoms, including pain, bleeding and changes in her M E D I C A L M A L P R A C T I C E Alex Stein, PhD z MEDICAL OPINION? How does your front desk handle calls from patients? TELEPHONE TRIAGE Front Desk Do's and Don'ts • Don't dole out healthcare advice to patients (it's against the law). • Do forward all patient com- plaints to doctors or other licensed professionals in a clear manner. • Do follow a script of what to say when patients call with com- plaints or symptoms.

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of Outpatient Surgery Magazine - Subscribers - Focused Factories - November 2015 - Outpatient Surgery Magazine