PAs work under the supervision of a physician or doctor and are trained to provide diagnostic, therapeutic, and preventive health care services. According to the United States Department of Labor, physician assistants held about 74,800 jobs 2008 and that number is expected to grow 39% to 103,900 in 2018. This dramatic increase means that physicians and doctors should take steps to properly train and supervise their assistants in order to prevent any malpractice claims.
“Proper training and development is key to the success of any medical professional, especially physician assistants,”
Kataf offers these additional tips to help physician assistants avoid a malpractice claim:
* Don’t be afraid to ask questions. If you are unsure at all of any procedure or diagnosis, ask the physician in charge.
* Education doesn’t stop at graduation. Take risk management courses to learn more about how to reduce the risks of malpractice.
* Always be open and honest with patients. Most malpractice lawsuits happen because of misunderstandings and lack of communication between doctor and patient.
* Request periodic refresher training workshops from the doctor, hospital, or clinic to stay updated on skills and procedures.
“As the number of physician assistants entering the medical field increase, it’s going to be very important for doctors and physicians to be proactive and invest more time in training. This will save a great deal of headache and costly lawsuits in the long run,” says Kataf.
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