Piercing the White Wall of Silence: Should Providers Disclose and Apologize?

March 15, 2017 | Risk Management News

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​Despite the efforts of patient advocates and some healthcare organizations to disclose adverse events, a culture in which "doctors clam up and hospitals deny wrongdoing" remains "standard operating procedure in most institutions," according to a March 13, 2017, Washington Post article. The article reviews two cases in which patients experienced adverse events. In one, a retired police officer was paralyzed when an orthopedic device penetrated his spine. The organization disclosed the error to the patient and his wife, and, implementing the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) Communication and Optimal Resolution (CANDOR) process, came to a confidential financial settlement and avoided litigation.

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