Medical malpractice is a contentious subject, fraught with anxiety and confusion for many physicians, including residents. There is a great deal written about what’s wrong with our current system, but much of it is contradictory and sometimes seems to pit physicians and patients against each other. Too often, residents are left out of the discussion altogether.
At CIR’s national convention in May 2010, we surveyed resident leaders about medical malpractice—what they knew, didn’t know, and wanted to learn. In short, respondents told us they definitely wanted to know more about medical malpractice, and a majority also indicated that CIR was a source they would turn to for that information. So here we are—with the CIR Medical Malpractice Initiative and a web page devoted to all things Med Mal. Our goals are three-fold:
Provide information on the medical malpractice system—and in particular how it affects residents
Introduce residents to the many innovative approaches to medical malpractice reform that work for both patients and physicians
Emphasize the role residents can play to reduce preventable medical errors and improve overall safety and quality for our patients
This website features a primerto get you started on the basics of medical malpractice; a video overview on disclosure and mediation; a comprehensive annotated bibliographyof articles and studies on the subject of medical malpractice, resident liability and system reform that residents can use for self-study; and the results of our Medical Malpractice survey.
Check back soon for the Frequently Asked Questions section specifically intended to address resident questions and concerns and updates on the CIR Medical Malpractice Initiative projects.
Many CIR members report that their training in medical malpractice issues is lacking, and few understand the policy of post-adverse event disclosure and apology, which is designed to address what the tort system fails to accomplish.
The medical malpractice system often does not provide timely and fair compensation for the patients injured by medical malpractice, it negatively affects how healthcare is delivered and alienates physicians. Transparency and effective doctor-patient communications are key to addressing the flaws in the medical malpractice system and aligning it with the patient safety movement. CIR has a program of educating residents on the malpractice system and ways to address its flaws.
In November 2010, Chris Stern Hyman, JD spoke to residents at a CIR New York Regional Meeting about medical malpractice and about how programs of Disclosure and Apology, in combination with Mediation are beneficial. This video is taken from her presentation.
Read these four articles for a solid introduction to medical malpractice and related issues.
Kachalia, Allen and David M. Studdert. “Professional Liability Issues in Graduate Medical Education.” Journal of the American Medical Association 292.9 (2004): 1051-1056.
Studdert, David M, Michelle M. Mello, and Troyen A. Brennan. “Medical Malpractice.” New England Journal of Medicine 350:3, January 15, 2004.
Boothman, Richard C., et al. “A Better Approach to Medical Malpractice Claims? The University of Michigan Experience.” Journal of Health & Life Sciences Law 2.2 (2009): 125-159.
McDonald, Timothy, Kelly M. Smith and David Mayer. ““Full Disclosure” and Residency Education: Resident Learning Opportunities within the context of a Comprehensive Program for Responding to Adverse Patient Events,” ACGME Bulletin (2008): 5-9.
At the 2010 CIR National Convention, we gave a self-administered survey to our delegates examining the medical malpractice system, its flaws, and potential reforms. The survey intended to explore residents’ knowledge about medical malpractice—their comfort with it and attitudes towards it—with the ultimate goal of determining how CIR can be most useful to its membership in further elucidating this complex system.
If you’re ready to dive deep into medical malpractice literature, download CIR’s Annotated Bibliography, a compilation of 96 articles exploring medical malpractice, insurance, liability, disclosure and mediation. Medical Malpractice Annotated Bibliography
In the debate over health care reform, the subject of medical malpractice reform has been hotly contested. CIR identifies two critical – and very much linked – priorities when considering solutions to this complex problem. One is reducing the cost …