A patient’s capacity to give informed consent or to leave the emergency department against medical advice is a topic of great relevance to emergency clinicians. This article discusses the difference between competence and capacity and highlights the four essential elements involved in the assessment of a patient’s capacity.
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists has released a practice bulletin to help providers use scientific evidence to guide women with coexisting medical conditions in making the most effective choices.
Domestic violence and abuse is a national and global healthcare problem with massive consequences, affecting men, women, and children. Awareness, recognition, and resource allocation, in addition to trauma management, is an important aspect of emergent care of the trauma patient possibly injured in a domestic violence incident.
Delirium is a complex disorder marked by the acute onset of mental status change with an associated fluctuating course. Despite the fact that delirium is a common clinical entity in elderly hospitalized patients, the condition may present in any patient regardless of medical comorbidities. Recognition within the emergency setting is becoming increasingly important, as the diagnosis frequently is missed.
In an observational study conducted at an academic medical center in London, researchers looked at factors involved in decision-making. The presumptive diagnosis of infection by the emergency department (ED) influenced decision-making by both medical and surgical admitting teams. Medical teams tended to use a multidisciplinary approach to antibiotic decision-making. Surgical teams often delegated antibiotic decision-making to the most junior members of the surgical team.
Internists more likely to be sued for high-severity injuries than doctors in other specialties, according a study of 1,180 claims against internal medicine physicians insured by The Doctors Company, the nation’s largest physician-owned medical malpractice insurer, based in Napa, CA.
A report calling medical errors the third leading cause of death has serious flaws that make that conclusion invalid, according to a physician. He says the report contributes to an irrational hysteria over medical errors.