[Skip to Content]
Access to paid content on this site is currently suspended due to excessive activity being detected from your IP address Please contact the publisher to request reinstatement.
[Skip to Content Landing]
Medical News & Perspectives
October 20, 2010

Disclosing Medical Errors Does Not Mean Greater Liability Costs, New Study Finds

JAMA. 2010;304(15):1656-1657. doi:10.1001/jama.2010.1422

Medical error, medical injury, a mistake: regardless of the name, apologizing for such a mishap remains a difficult act for physicians, other health care workers, and hospital administrators.

Many reasons are given for such reluctance to apologize, including embarrassment and discomfort, loss of reputation, or the belief that such disclosure may actually bring more harm to the patient and family. Still, perhaps the biggest barriers are economic, particularly the fears that admitting to participating in a medical error will lead to higher insurance premiums and more malpractice lawsuits with higher compensation awards.