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Partner spotlight: Digital Surgery

Digital Surgery(1) has an award-winning surgical simulation platform, Touch Surgery(2) (free download available on Android and iOS), which provides surgeons with an entire library of surgical workflow simulations at their fingertips. CARE, LLC partnered with Digital Surgery because we strongly believe that this application is improving lives across the globe. The platform allows surgeons to review, test, and practice their skills before ever working on patients. This in turn increases both confidence and skill, which translates into better patient outcomes.

Studies show that confidence and competence(3) grow along the same curve. Training simulations in the library that Digital Surgery has developed aid in increasing this growth curve. Touch Surgery Professional(4), another one of Digital Surgery’s products, is a video-sharing web and mobile-based platform, which enables groups of surgeons to share their techniques within their department and across institutions, along with allowing program directors to more easily assess the performance of their surgical residents. This in turn accelerates development and the adoption of best practices across any given institution.

Many conferences and hands-on training courses use simulation technology to advance surgical training, such as at the University of California San Diego Center for the Future of Surgery(5). Simulation training allows for a multi-faceted approach to learn and to share experiences with peers.

This knowledge sharing is what makes Digital Surgery’s applications so successful. Surgical teams can build their own personalized library to share with their colleagues, which helps to standardize procedures and best practices, and eliminates waste, inefficiency, and ambiguity. Outside of surgical teams, the platform helps bridge the training gap between surgeons and medical device manufacturers, ensuring clinicians and staff are properly trained on the use of new equipment.

For CARE policy holders, this can translate into true savings. This expansive training tool reduces your risk of malpractice litigation. Streamlining and standardizing surgical procedures ensures that there is little room for error, which also mitigates your risk potential. And fewer adverse incidents converts into lower liability premiums. Contact us today for more information about how these tools can benefit you as a CARE client.

Footnotes

Medical Malpractice Concerns: Mitigating Your Risk

Can physicians and providers take steps to mitigate their malpractice lawsuit risk? While it may seem an inevitability, there are measures you can take to protect yourself and your practice.

The first step involves patient relations. Having a solid rapport with patients before any issues arise is the best way to instill confidence and trust. It is important to communicate to patients whenever a problem occurs. And if that issue includes a physician error, an apology is a necessary component of malpractice mitigation. An honest conversation about what went wrong builds faith in the patient/provider relationship. No one wants to do business with someone that they feel is untrustworthy. Not a mechanic, and certainly not a medical provider. The transparency of communicating the issue is paramount to patient relations, but the solution is also important. Resolve the issue and it strengthens your reputation as a problem solver.

Documentation is an important part of any malpractice avoidance strategy. Documentation is not only about maintaining detailed official patient records about diagnoses and procedures, but also includes proof of all conversations involving consent, care, complications, options, and expectations of both the provider and the patient. An often-overlooked piece of documentation is when a patient is referred to another provider. If their condition is serious, ensure that they understand the urgency in which they need treatment and follow up.

Another element largely at play is simple geography. Educate yourself on your state’s specific malpractice laws. Variations and factors include:

  • Each state’s tort reform laws differ, some require a certificate of merit before a case can proceed through the court system
  • Some states enlist the professional opinion of medical review panels, which are comprised of medical and legal professionals
  • Statutes of limitation also differ between states
  • Damage caps vary, and play a large part in whether attorneys are willing to proceed with malpractice suits

In general, it’s important to have a concrete system of checks and balances in place (this protects both providers and patients). It encourages professionalism at all points of contact and eliminates doubt that any patient is likely to have when undergoing serious/complicated medical treatment. Being deemed reliable is a great way to mitigate your malpractice suit likelihood.

Contact us today. We can analyze your firm’s liability potential and provide you with solutions to lessen your malpractice concerns.