Display Settings:

Format

Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
J Gen Intern Med. 2006 Jul;21(7):704-10.

Disclosure of medical errors: what factors influence how patients respond?

Author information

  • 1Meyers Primary Care Institute, University of Massachusetts Medical School, Fallon Foundation and Fallon Community Health Plan, Worcester, MA 01605, USA. kathleen.mazor@umassmed.edu

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Disclosure of medical errors is encouraged, but research on how patients respond to specific practices is limited.

OBJECTIVE:

This study sought to determine whether full disclosure, an existing positive physician-patient relationship, an offer to waive associated costs, and the severity of the clinical outcome influenced patients' responses to medical errors.

PARTICIPANTS:

Four hundred and seven health plan members participated in a randomized experiment in which they viewed video depictions of medical error and disclosure.

DESIGN:

Subjects were randomly assigned to experimental condition. Conditions varied in type of medication error, level of disclosure, reference to a prior positive physician-patient relationship, an offer to waive costs, and clinical outcome.

MEASURES:

Self-reported likelihood of changing physicians and of seeking legal advice; satisfaction, trust, and emotional response.

RESULTS:

Nondisclosure increased the likelihood of changing physicians, and reduced satisfaction and trust in both error conditions. Nondisclosure increased the likelihood of seeking legal advice and was associated with a more negative emotional response in the missed allergy error condition, but did not have a statistically significant impact on seeking legal advice or emotional response in the monitoring error condition. Neither the existence of a positive relationship nor an offer to waive costs had a statistically significant impact.

CONCLUSIONS:

This study provides evidence that full disclosure is likely to have a positive effect or no effect on how patients respond to medical errors. The clinical outcome also influences patients' responses. The impact of an existing positive physician-patient relationship, or of waiving costs associated with the error remains uncertain.

PMID:
16808770
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC1924693
Free PMC Article

Images from this publication.See all images (1)Free text

FIGURE 1
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

0 comments
How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk