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[By staff reporters]

The Three Basic Duties

A cash-based medical practice or direct care provider has these basic duties:

  1. * to comply with statutory duties such as the drug laws
  2. * to obtain proper consent for medical care
  3. * to render care that is not substantially inferior to that offered by like providers

A breach of any of these duties that causes harm to a patient can result in a malpractice suit. While the first two duties are important, it is the duty to render good quality medical care that is the basis for most malpractice lawsuits. The breach of this duty is most likely to result in a serious patient injury. The prevention of such negligent injuries is the responsibility of the individual provider, but it also basic to the institution’s quality control program.

From the individual provider’s point of view, quality control involves continuing education, attention to detail, and retrospective review of the course of the provider’s patients. The process is only loosely structured and is usually poorly documented. This lack of formal structure is less important for the individual provider because the provider’s actions are judged only within the context of the injured patient in question (although previous actions may be used to negate claims of accidental injury).


And so, the legal questions is whether the care rendered the injured patient was negligent. It is not relevant to the case if the provider carried out an effective personal quality control program.


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

 Harvard Medical School

Boston Children’s Hospital – Psychiatrist

Yale University



3 Responses

  1. NOW – Most Health Plans Provide Price Estimator Tools

    America’s Health Insurance Plans (AHIP) recently conducted a survey on health plan price transparency tools. Here are some key findings from the report:

    • Almost 3 in 4 health plans surveyed provide price estimator tools to members.
    • 39% of these plans launched their price estimator tools more than 3 years ago.
    • 4 in 5 of these plans choose which services to provide estimates for based on common procedures.
    • Most (71%) health plans provide estimates for physician services.
    • 58% of plans included cost estimates for prescription drugs.
    • 2 in 3 responding plans shared provider performance data with their enrollees.

    Source: American Journal of Managed Care, February 16, 2016


  2. Direct primary care

    An evidence-based dialogue is needed.



  3. Direct Care?

    A new kind of doctor’s office charges a monthly fee and doesn’t take insurance — and it could be the future of medicine



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