Saturday, November 12, 2011

Stanford University Program Offers Apology and Financial Compensation to Patients Affected by Adverse Events-Since then Liability Premiums and Numbers of Claims Have Dropped

       Stanford University has developed a new way to deal with high liability payments by creating a more transparent and patient centered approach to dealing with adverse events.  In this new program, they identify adverse events that have been reported by physicians or patients within 90 days of its occurrence.  Investigations are made, and if the event is determined to have been avoidable, the patient and or family is contacted with the results, an apology is made and compensation is discussed. 
       According to Stanford, liability claim frequency has dropped 36% since implementation of the program in 2007 and they estimate that they have saved $3.2 million in annual premiums since the program has been established.  It seems like this may be a good thing to identify adverse events early, holding physicians accountable, apologizing and rectifying the situation when possible.

O’Reilly, K., Stanford Cuts Liability Premiums with Cash Offers After Errors.  American Medical News (November 7, 2011).

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