This is not rocket science – if you do not want to be sued, then make the effort to communicate better.
The Archives of Internal Medicine recently released a study that shows that when it comes to communicating with one another, primary care doctors and medical specialists fail. This can put patients at risk of a serious medical error.
The study took an interesting route to analyze information. It wanted to know how primary care doctors and specialists viewed the quality of information sharing between them. The results were not flattering to either side, and involved a lack of accurate, timely information about patient medical histories, whether or not there were any chronic conditions, and missing lab reports.
When two doctors are involved in treating a patient, if they do not talk to one another in a clear and relevant manner the patient gets stuck with a lower quality of treatment. Neither treatment may work or one treatment may negate the other. Unless doctors talk to one another with patient safety in mind, mistakes will happen.
The data showed that at least 70 percent of primary care doctors send in-depth medical histories and include explanations for their reasons to refer to a specialist. If that is the case, it is odd to note that 35 percent of specialists say they do not receive that kind of information. Whether they really do not get it or do not read it is the unanswered question.
Ultimately, if this huge gap in communication is indeed common, then the specialist is at a huge disadvantage in treating a referred patient. It would be like trying to treat a patient with no clue about prior tests (which may account for several tests for the same thing), comorbid conditions, or drug allergies, for example. To say that this lack of information would have an impact on the choice of treatments is a major understatement. It may even mean a specialist will choose a path of treatment that is detrimental to the long-term health of the patient.
While medical errors can and do happen, the significant lack of vital information given is medical malpractice in and of itself. What doctor would not want to find out more information about a patient when they are treating them? Evidently, there are more doctors and specialists than we might imagine who do not go the extra mile to ask pertinent questions about referred patients.
Are you a victim of a bad outcome with a doctor or specialist? Do not wait until it is too late to do something about it. Call an experienced New Hampshire injury lawyer and find out what you need to know to move forward with your life. It is the best call you will ever make. Those who commit medical malpractice must be held responsible for their actions. Doctors and specialists need to be accountable to those they treat. Remember that when you call an expert New Hampshire injury lawyer.
Charlie Donahue is a New Hampshire personal injury lawyer located in Keene. Donahue handles injury cases in New Hampshire and across the United States. To learn more about New Hampshire injury attorney, Charlie Donahue, visit Donahuelawfirm.com.