Reducing Medical Malpractice Cases Involving Diagnostic Tests

Medical malpractice is a serious problem facing the healthcare system.

medical communication

It is extremely important to understand the root causes of medical malpractice and address the issue to prevent patient injuries and deaths. Better communication between the various health care professionals can help prevent many cases of medical malpractice.

Effective Communication and Diagnostic Testing

Communication is a vital component of delivering effective care to patients. If a doctor or any other healthcare professional fails to communicate properly, there is a high chance that medical malpractice will occur. Doctors are relying more and more on diagnostic tests to identify and treat medical conditions in patients and communication problems are bound to occur. This has been confirmed by a study conducted at SUNNY Downstate Medical Center. The study revealed that the increasing number of tests has put doctors at a higher risk of communication failures.

Over the last decade, healthcare professionals, such as emergency room physicians and OBGYNS, have been ordering a high number of diagnostic tests. Commonly ordered diagnostic tests include CT scans, ultrasounds, X-rays, and MRIs. These tests play a critical role in helping a doctor arrive at a correct diagnosis and to formulate an effective treatment plan for the patient.

Communication Errors Resulting in Medical Malpractice

As more and more diagnostic tests are being ordered, the need for better communication is assuming a greater importance. It includes delivering the diagnostic test results in a timely manner. Apart from the timeliness of the information, accuracy is also critical when it comes to effective communication. Healthcare professionals must ensure that relevant information is communicated in a timely and accurate manner. Communication errors can lead to medical malpractice in a number of ways. The most common communication errors that lead to diagnostic mistakes include:

  • Doctors or patients not receiving proper diagnostic information.
  • Delays in providing diagnostic test results.
  • Long turnaround time.

These three errors combined lead to millions worth of medical malpractice payouts every year in the United States. There are advanced information technologies available that can considerably improve communication reliability, patient safety, and efficiency. These technologies can also help gather documentation in case someone files a failure to diagnose medical malpractice claim.

Preventing Medical Malpractice

All healthcare professionals including doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and lab technicians should develop and implement systems to ensure that communication flows smoothly right from the time when the test is ordered until the results are delivered. Adopting a multifaceted approach can help to prevent medical malpractice cases arising out of communication mistakes.

If a communication error on the part of a medical professional has caused you injury, call Zevan and Davidson Law Firm at (314) 588-7200 for a free evaluation of your case.

Missouri Medical Malpractice Lawyer

If you have suffered as a result of medical malpractice, contact our legal team right away. Waiting to seek legal representation can prevent you from filing a claim and receiving the compensation you deserve.


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