Posted on: April 11, 2019 by Manchester Specialty
Home health care patients have the legal right to make their own decisions regarding whether to accept or reject health care given them in the home. This is known as informed consent in which a patient should be apprised of the nature, risks and alternatives of a medical procedure or treatment before the physician or other health care professional begins any such course of action. Upon receiving this information, the patient either consents to or refuses the procedure or treatment.
This may sound pretty straightforward but it isn’t necessarily as clear as one might think. Too often the emphasis is on getting the patient’s signature on the informed consent form, and not on patient communication, so that he or she truly understands what’s involved in the treatment or procedure, including the risks. In fact, according to The Joint Commission, communication issues are the most frequent cause of serious adverse events – from falls to medication errors and other potential professional liability-related incidents.
The Joint Commission reveals that a patient’s lack of understanding regarding the type of treatment or procedure being suggested may be as a result of:
An effective informed consent process should include these steps:
The informed consent process goes beyond just getting a signature on a form, and with proper communication and decision-making tools involved a patient can truly understand the treatment or procedure being presented. Properly executed, the informed consent process not only improves the provider-patient relationship, it can also be used as an effective risk management tool in preventing and minimizing professional liability exposures.
Manchester Specialty specializes in providing home health care agencies with comprehensive insurance solutions, including Entity Professional Liability coverage. Our policy is available on a claims-made or occurrence basis, offers deductible plans and flexible retention levels, includes separate limits for Abuse & Molestation coverage, and provides “tail” coverage when needed. For more information about how our products and services can help protect your insureds, please contact us at 855.972.9399.
Posted in: Home Healthcare Providers
Tagged: Home Based Health Care Home Care Professional Liability Home Health Care Home Healthcare Providers Informed Consent Professional Liability Professional Liability for Home Health Care Providers