Contact HealthDay
Tel: 203.855.1400 or E-mail

News By Specialty

Allergy
Anesthesiology
Cardiology
Cosmetic Surgery
Critical Care
Dermatology
Diabetes & Endocrinology
Emergency Medicine
Family Practice
Gastroenterology
Geriatrics
Hematology & Oncology
HIV & AIDS
Infectious Disease
Internal Medicine
Nephrology
Neurology
Nursing
OBGYN & Women's Health
Ophthalmology
Orthopedics
Otolaryngology
Pain Management
Pathology
Pediatrics
Pharmacy
Psychiatry
Pulmonology
Radiology
Rheumatology
Surgery
Urology

Follow us on:

    


e-Healthcare Leadership Awards


Clinicians Often Fail to Empathize After Adverse Event
Training needed to ensure capacity to express empathy, without admitting fault

MONDAY, June 16, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The health care industry is recognizing the benefits of prompt and transparent physician communication with patients and families about bad outcomes, according to an article published June 10 in Medical Economics.

The author of the article, Debra Beaulieu-Volk, notes that, previously, saying little was promoted as a means to protect against medical malpractice. But now, the legal landscape is shifting, with at least 36 states now having apology laws that prohibit certain statements, expressions, or other evidence related to disclosure from being admissible in a lawsuit. Expressions of empathy and sympathy are not admissible in court based on most state laws, while a few states protect admissions of fault.

According to Beaulieu-Volk, Doug Wojcieszak, founder of Sorry Works!, says that most clinicians are not trained to express empathy without admitting fault. Stress, shock, and embarrassment of a potential mistake can lead physicians to react inappropriately, including not empathizing enough or saying things to the family that extends beyond the facts known at the time.

"After a physician's first conversation with a patient or family member -- one that should express empathy and a promise to follow up as soon as more facts are known -- the next step should be a phone call to the doctor's professional liability carrier," said Don Karotkin, a malpractice attorney with Karotkin & Associates in Houston, according the Medical Economics article.

More Information



Copyright © 2014 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

October 25, 2014

Archive Search

By Keyword:
By Category:
By Topic:

Related Articles

HSV Infection May Contribute to Development of Alzheimer's

Sleep Duration Linked to Ulcerative Colitis Risk

Airborne Transmission of Ebola Highly Unlikely

New York City Health Officials Confirm First Ebola Case

Coworker Response 'Crucial' in Workplace Bullying Resolution

U.S. Ranks Last Among Wealthy Nations in Health Care Access