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Healthcare Risk Management – August 1, 2022

August 1, 2022

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  • New Tool Released for Investigating Diagnostic Errors

    A new tool developed by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality promises to help risk managers and quality improvement professionals analyze adverse events involving diagnostic errors, still one of the most challenging patient safety issues.

  • Financial Effect of Fall Prevention Can Be Significant

    Falls in a healthcare facility can have serious health consequences for the patient. This is reason enough to aggressively pursue a risk reduction program. However, the financial cost to the healthcare provider cannot be ignored, and those losses can be helpful in justifying the time, effort, and money spent on fall reduction.

  • Wheelchair Falls May Be Underestimated in Fall Reduction Programs

    Falls from wheelchairs are a serious patient safety risk but may not receive enough attention in the overall effort to prevent falls. A focus on reducing wheelchair falls can substantially affect overall fall reduction.

  • HRSA Compliance Exposes Hospitals to Liability and Fines

    The Health Resources and Services Administration program that reimbursed providers for COVID-19-related treatment for uninsured patients was instrumental in helping hospitals survive the pandemic without excessive financial losses. But the federal government is looking at how that money was obtained and whether it was spent properly.

  • Prosecution for Excessive Painkillers Tough Case to Make

    In a highly publicized case, a critical care doctor was acquitted on 14 counts of second-degree murder. The prosecution alleged the defendant had ordered excessively high fentanyl dosages that caused patient deaths. Prosecutors presented solid evidence and a strong circumstantial case, yet the defense still won. In this case, prosecutors had to prove either the doctor knew the dose of painkillers could kill the patient, or the doctor was aware of the risk, and the risk was unreasonable.

  • Debilitating Leg Surgery and Failure to Diagnose Results in $111 Million Verdict

    In this matter, the principal issue is the physician’s failure to evaluate, diagnose, and treat the patient’s acute compartment syndrome. A failure to diagnose is an unfortunately common form of medical malpractice.

  • Failure to Diagnose and Treat Lupus May Support Liability for Psychiatrist

    From the legal perspective, this case highlights the importance of experts for medical malpractice litigation and finding the right expert. Since the practice of medicine is a highly skilled and highly specialized field, it is critical for an expert to possess the requisite skill, knowledge, and experience to persuasively comment on pertinent issues.