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February 2018

Practicing Safe Dermatology—Screening Out Liability

Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Dermatology, University of Florida College of Medicine, Gainesville
  • 2Department of Dermatology, Loma Linda University Medical Center, Loma Linda, California
JAMA Dermatol. 2018;154(2):142-143. doi:10.1001/jamadermatol.2017.4838

The article “Characteristics of Medical Liability Claims Against Dermatologists From 1991 Through 2015” by Kornmehl and colleagues1 is a welcome addition in our quest to understand how to reduce dermatology practice risk. The study confirms much of what we already knew or suspected but also provides some new interesting insights. It is reassuring to see that most malpractice cases against dermatologists are “abandoned, withdrawn or dismissed.”1 Similarly, it is comforting to know that there has been a net reduction of 29.2% in paid claims for dermatologists. Is this secondary to improved patient care? The changing landscape of tort reform? Or both?