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1/25/2018 7:38:29 AM
Posted: 8/9/2002 11:03:03 AM EST
Guys, after nearly 30 years in health care yesterday I received a summons in a malpractice case. The case was over two years ago and was filed about 1 week before the statute of limitations expired. I have no recall of this case, and have not had the chance to review the records. From what I can tell with the info I have been able to learn so far, is that this claim is pure BS. But money is a powerful influence. I have contacted my malpractice carrier and they will be providing counsel in my defense. Emotionally this is devastating to me. I have devoted my entire adult life to helping people, and the thought that I might have caused someone harm is the worst feeling I have ever had. Please remember me in your prayers if you are so inclined, and a few words for my patient wouldn't hurt either. Thanks for your help, Dennis
Link Posted: 8/9/2002 11:30:01 AM EST
Link Posted: 8/9/2002 12:02:34 PM EST
Don't take it personally. It isn't about you, it is about getting $$$.
Link Posted: 8/9/2002 2:30:24 PM EST
When there's a bad outcome (or can argue so), they want to punish and collect. People react strangely (and humanly) in these situations. I read of one woman wanting to punish the ER & staff because they ran up bills trying to save her husband. Grief does funny things. Of course, if they hadn't tried, she'd have sued them, then, too. And if they'd saved him, she'd be happy for that, but probably still complain. If you don't recall it, that probably means the patient didn't come back to you at the time trying to get help with the problem. While it's natural to go through self-examination, there are probably many other possibilities. You may get only have part of the picture from the records you see -- the patient could have been seeing others for care, could have done stuff themselves that ruined their health, etc. And let's not forget --medicines might have unforseen effects. So try to have faith in yourself, and we'll all wish you and your patient well. Personally, I'll pray.
Link Posted: 8/9/2002 2:38:59 PM EST
Link Posted: 8/9/2002 2:53:41 PM EST
It truly, truly, truly sucks to get that kind of news. It's the worst nightmare for any conscientuous health-care provider, and always feels very, very personal. It'll probably continue to bug the hell out of you until you see it finished and the creepazoids have gone away. But I'm going to share a few words of reassurance anyway! [:D] Fortunately, based on statistics alone, it's never likely to proceed beyond the initial claims phase, and will probably never, ever get to a point where it might actually end up being settled or go to some kind of court action. The odds are greatly against it ever going all the way. In my state, the initial claim can be filed by ANYBODY for ANY reason, but then gets reviewed by an administrative type person at the board. If they deem it worthy of further investigation, then they'll pass it on to the actual professionals. You (or your reps.) get a chance to respond at every stage, more or less, so while it's an aggravating process, you have alot of opportunities to set the record straight. The odds are in your favor. Check it out- look up the claims filed against others in your profession and compare that to the actual number of actions boards take. You'll see what I mean. I could go on and on, but will stop here. It will probably work out, but it will be painful- a little bit or a lot, depending... Whatever you do, do NOT let yourself listen to the doom and gloomers, the "I hate lawyers" crowd, or any other negativity. Think positive, get your own personal attorney, and stay involved with the insurance company. but you know all that! [:D] Good luck! (now go have a beer!)
Link Posted: 8/10/2002 9:38:42 AM EST
Link Posted: 8/10/2002 9:58:03 AM EST
The only issue here is the malpractice case. I don't think dmuldrew said anything about a complaint to the licensing board. Granted, the two sometimes will both occur, but not necessarily at the same time. I'm no lawyer, but it would be stupid for one to file a complaint to a licensing board at the same time a lawsuit was pending/happening. That would be dangerous speculation that could backfire. File complaint>>>>>board does nothing due to lack of merit>>>>>lawsuit is undercut.
Link Posted: 8/10/2002 2:10:32 PM EST
I expect no report to any licensing agency. If I have a judgment against me it will be recorded in the National Database. After reviewing the "complaint" and I use those words with great disdain, I am certain that I handled this case just like I have handled the tens of thousands of others that I have provided over the last 20 years. I became an EMT right out of high school, became a paramedic while attending college, went to nursing school while working full time in a big city ED. I became an advanced practice nurse about 20 years ago, and have administered tens of thousands of anesthetics since then. I have no specific recall of this case, and have yet to see the records. The guys at my malpractice carrier tell me I am way ahead of the curve, cause the average is one suite for each 5 years of practice. I have been lucky. I think I do my job well, and am very concientious. Not every case turns out like I would like it to. I am only human. But when something is wrong I try and discuss it openly with the patient, and this approach has worked for me. Problem is, I don't know anything about this case, or this patient. Time will tell. If I am lucky the thing will get tossed before trial, but I have come to the conclusion that I am sure I did everything correctly within the standard of care, and come what may, it is out of my hands. I am upset, sure, but I can't let this possess me. It may take several years to come to a conclusion. Thanks for thinking about me.
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