To deliver excellent healthcare and to control the risks of doing so, doctors and other healthcare providers need to develop risk management plans.In other words, what best practices can be implemented to protect patients from harm and to avoid costly medical malpractice insurance claims and legal action against providers?In this blog, we will investigate the role risk management has in controlling your medical malpractice insurance costs.
Deliver Consistently Excellent Medical Care
Best medical practices do not 100 percent guarantee desired therapeutic outcomes or positive patient reviews.However, top-notch medical services–from initial patient intake to assessment and diagnosis to treatment and follow-up–definitely suppress a patient’s desire to file a malpractice claim and the ability to gain a monetary payout.
So, practice preventive medical care in every sense.It will protect your patient’s immediate and long-term health needs and also avoid the circumstances and settings that can precipitate medical malpractice litigation.
Implement Risk Management Strategies and Protocols
Solid risk management protocols–from promptly responding to patient inquiries to comprehensive documentation of medical notes, advisories, and treatments–run parallel with quality medical care. An effective risk management strategy provides an extra layer of security for the practice in the event of a malpractice claim or lawsuit.
Risk management training for staff can further bolster your protection from legal action related to alleged negligence or incompetence in providing health care services.Additionally, it’s wise to periodically review existing policies and procedures as well as to develop new ones that make sense under current circumstances.Taking these proactive steps can help control insurance coverage costs by minimizing potential losses due to medical negligence claims.
Every day, doctors can manage their risks for medical malpractice claims and litigation, and therefore, the price of their premiums by:
- Avoiding misdiagnoses and medication/treatment and surgical errors
- Communicating with patients clearly about their medical issues and the steps toward treatment and recovery
- Selecting, training, and updating the best support staff possible
- Reviewing existing patient and office policies and updating them as necessary
- Accurately and expeditiously archiving, or charting, patient care notes and test results
- Following up with patients after a recent emergency room visit, hospitalization, surgery, or other in-office treatment or care with a specialty provider
- Closely protecting patient privacy (enforcing HIPAA protocols) regarding identity, medical records, prescriptions, and treatment plans
- Having proper in-office staff-to-patient ratios, appointment slots for acutely ill and geriatric individuals, and the lowest wait times possible
Guard The Patient’s Electronic Medical Record And Communication
Today’s electronic medical records, or EMRs, are also called paperless charts.They are digitally stored, updated, and shared with other healthcare providers as needed.As part of risk reduction in your medical practice, be sure these electronic medical records are:
- Expeditiously and accurately updated after patient visits, tests, and procedures
- Include test results and surgical notes
- Are 100 percent private, secure, and protected from cyber thieves
- Contain documentation that is clearly written, spelled correctly, and uses professional but understandable vocabulary
Also, if you communicate with your patients via text and email, be sure those digital messages are fully encrypted.That means that only the person to whom the message or email is intended can receive and open it.Utilizing these systems correctly helps to ensure that the patient’s information remains protected and your medical practice is compliant with HIPAA regulations.
This combination of attention to administrative and medical detail, communication, and up-to-date cyber security assures patients that their healthcare team is looking out for their best interests.It builds trust between you and your patients, which can lead to a positive long-term relationship.It also protects you, your income, your assets, your reputation, and your practice from medical malpractice lawsuits and claims.
The Best Price for Medical Malpractice Insurance
At eQuoteMD, our highly trained brokers shop top-rated companies to find insurance coverage for doctors and other healthcare providers that protects them from the financial and emotional impacts of medical malpractice claims and litigation.We also recommend ways for physicians to avoid the pitfalls that delivering complex patient care in a technologically diverse environment can create.
Our company is based in St. Louis, MO, but we serve providers in all healthcare specialties in all 50 states.Learn more about us and how we can help you choose the right medical malpractice insurance: (855) 823-5283, or request your appointment here.