How To Avoid Being Sued For Dental Malpractice
While dental malpractice insurance from a company like HMBD Insurance Services is there to help you protect your livelihood, you want to do everything you can to avoid needing to use it. You'll find the tips below helpful when it comes to avoiding being on the receiving end of a dental malpractice suit.
Keep your staff well-educated
You want to make sure your staff is knowledgeable in all the areas they are going to be responsible for. They need to know when they need to pass patients through to you, what constitutes emergency visits and how to handle calls from concerned patients. Your staff is your first line of contact with your patients and they must be competent.
Practice good communication with your patients
It's very important for you to make sure you keep your patients well informed of their treatment plan and options every step of the way. Take extra care in answering all their questions and listening to their concerns. You will significantly decrease your chances of being sued by developing good relationships with your patients.
Don't bully your patients too hard over past due bills
If you have a patient who gets behind in their payments, it probably means they aren't financially able to pay or they aren't satisfied with their treatment. If you push them too hard to make a payment or threaten them with a judgement, you are taking a chance on them retaliating with a malpractice suit.
No matter how small something may seem, it needs to be put in the chart. If you don't put something in the chart, then you may find yourself without the necessary proof you need to defend yourself against an allegation. Included in the chart should even be the reason for putting off a necessary treatment. Whether it's due to your patients busy schedule or a lapse in judgement, you want to have proof of why the treatment was not done right away. You also want to chart any non-compliance issues with the patient.
Admit your limitations
Anytime you feel a procedure is out of your expertise, you want to be sure you refer your patient to a dentist you feel would best serve their needs. It's more important for both your patient and your reputation for you to admit they would be best served going to someone more well-versed in that procedure than for you to do something out of your comfort zone.