The Sloan Law Firm PLLC

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What should a doctor do if they are sued

by | Feb 8, 2022 | Firm News

Medical professionals want to help people and save lives. While they spend years studying and training, they still occasionally make mistakes. There are also times when a patient views something as a mistake even though the doctor was treating them to the best of their ability.

When facing a medical malpractice lawsuit, what the doctor does is important. The actions immediately after may affect the outcome of the case, regardless of how strong it is.

Steps to take after a suit is filed

According to Medical Economics, almost 10% of doctors continue to treat the people who are suing them for other conditions. It may be a good idea to send the patient to another professional once they have filed a malpractice suit.

While it is not necessary to panic when a suit is filed, a doctor must have the correct representation immediately. The only person they should talk to is the attorney who is handling the case.

Physicians should never alter records after treatment, and this is especially important if a case is under investigation. They should also avoid the natural tendency to investigate the claim on their own, but rather avoid the topic with staff or colleagues who may also be involved in the case.

Rely on insurance policies and do not panic

A medical malpractice lawsuit can sound terrifying on paper, but physicians carry a special insurance policy for a reason. The case may be settled out of court, but the doctor should never handle the negotiation process. Once an attorney has resolved the case as successfully as possible, it may also be beneficial for the doctor to see a mental health professional.