Everything I continue to read points to the patient-provider relationship as THE key factor in determining whether or not the patient is likely to pursue litigation. The importance of listing to, and acting on patient feedback was again made very clear to me in an article titled:
"A Friendly Approach to Reducing Medical Malpractice Litigation", an article by Aaron A. Bucco (2006) in bepress Legal Series.
Here’s an excerpt:
"Acknowledging the physical and emotional needs of patients has the potential to effectively stop the patient from demanding, through litigation, what they are currently not receiving… attention. This is not to suggest that all medical malpractice claims arise out of a selfish desire to be noticed. Doctors do, however, have a tremendous amount to do with patient satisfaction beyond mere relief of symptoms. Attention to a patient through listening skills, compassion, and other communication techniques not only reduces the risk of patient-doctor miscommunication leading to medical error, but also relaxes the patient and allows the doctor to properly influence recovery."
Click this link to connect to the bepress Legal Repository to download a copy of the article in its entirety: http://law.bepress.com/expresso/eps/1600.
I am convinced; listening to patients -- or any consumer for that matter -- and taking action based on their feedback absolutely will minimize litigation.
At the risk of sounding like a commercial promotion, (our blog is intended to inform and not to advertise), I’d be remiss not to make you aware of MedicalGPS’ M3-Patient Experience real-time patient feedback system. The system is so affordable; it eliminates the affordability argument.
--- Jerry Stone