Investigations you may face as a hospital doctor
In the UK doctors can be held accountable in more ways than almost any other profession. Michael Devlin gives an overview of investigations that can be made
- By: Michael Devlin
Although most consultations are uneventful, things sometimes go wrong even with skilled and caring clinicians. It's difficult to practise hospital medicine without some knowledge of investigations which may be made into an adverse incident. This is important because seeking professional help at the outset might be crucial in determining an appropriate outcome.
It is never pleasant to be the subject of a complaint, but by responding quickly and sympathetically to a patient's grievance, the sting can often be taken out of a complaint, preventing it from escalating.
The current National Health Service complaints procedure has three distinct parts:
As with any complaints procedure, the purpose is to satisfy the complainant that his or her complaint has been fully investigated, ideally at the first stage. This will usually include an explanation of what went wrong, and reassurance procedures will be reviewed to prevent a recurrence and, where appropriate, an apology made