PRACTICE RISKS IN CORRECTIONAL CARE MEDICINE

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Some Thoughts and Some Statistics

dr-david-e-marcinko-mba-msl[By Dr. David Edward Marcinko MBA]

Most primary care doctors, psychologists and psychiatrists who work in corrections long enough will end up being named in a lawsuit or having a complaint filed against them with their licensing board.

And, it is a fact that physicians who treat inmates are at greater risk of litigation.

Bureau of Justice Statistics

According to the 2011-12 National Inmate Survey conducted by the Bureau of Justice Statistics:

  • Half of state and federal prisoners and jail inmates reported a history of a chronic medical condition.
  • About 2/3 of females in prisons (63%) and jails (67%) reported ever having a chronic condition
  • An estimated 40% of prisoners and inmates reported having a current chronic medical condition.
  • About 1 in 5 (21%) of prisoners and 14% of jail inmates reported ever having an infectious disease.
  • Approximately 1% of prisoners and jail inmates reported being HIV positive.
  • High blood pressure was the most common condition reported by prisoners (30%) and inmates (26%).
  • Nearly a quarter (24%) of prisoners and jail inmates reported ever having at least 2 chronic conditions.
  • 66% of prisoners and 40% of jail inmates with a chronic condition reported taking prescription medication.And, although specific figures are not available, malpractice carriers are quite aware of this risk.

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gavel stethoscope

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Risks Not a Work Deterrent

Yet, according to colleague Eric A. Dover MD and Jeffrey Knuppel MD, a psychiatrist who blogs at The Positive Medical Blog, the risk of litigation should not be a deterrent to working as a health care professional in correction facilities if:

1. You truly like working in the correctional setting. This work is not for everyone. If you don’t really like it anyway, then the thought of getting sued is just likely to decrease your career satisfaction further.

2. You have ability to be assertive yet get along well with most people. If you frequently find yourself in power struggles with people or cannot politely set limits, then do not work in corrections. If you let your ego get involved in you interpersonal interactions very often, then you’re likely to irritate many inmates, and you probably will become a target for lawsuits and complaints [personal communication]. 

Conclusion

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Speaker: If you need a moderator or speaker for an upcoming event, Dr. David E. Marcinko; MBA – Publisher-in-Chief of the Medical Executive-Post – is available for seminar or speaking engagements. Contact: MarcinkoAdvisors@msn.com

OUR OTHER PRINT BOOKS AND RELATED INFORMATION SOURCES:

Risk Management, Liability Insurance, and Asset Protection Strategies for Doctors and Advisors: Best Practices from Leading Consultants and Certified Medical Planners™8Comprehensive Financial Planning Strategies for Doctors and Advisors: Best Practices from Leading Consultants and Certified Medical Planners™

“With time at a premium, and so much vital information packed into one well organized resource, this comprehensive textbook should be on the desk of everyone serving in the healthcare ecosystem. The time you spend reading this frank and compelling book will be richly rewarded.”

Dr. J. Wesley Boyd MD PhD MA [Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts]

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2 Responses

  1. Why Prisons Should Try Readmissions Penalties

    An essay by STUART M. BUTLER.

    http://thehealthcareblog.com/blog/2015/08/19/why-prisons-should-try-readmissions-penalties/

    Dr. Blair

    Like

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