Malpractice: Failure of a professional person, a physician or lawyer, to render proper services through reprehensible ignorance or negligence or through criminal intent, especially when injury or loss follows. (Random House Unabridged Dictionary, 2d ed)Insurance, Liability: Insurance against loss resulting from liability for injury or damage to the persons or property of others.Liability, Legal: Accountability and responsibility to another, enforceable by civil or criminal sanctions.Defensive Medicine: The alterations of modes of medical practice, induced by the threat of liability, for the principal purposes of forestalling lawsuits by patients as well as providing good legal defense in the event that such lawsuits are instituted.Expert Testimony: Presentation of pertinent data by one with special skill or knowledge representing mastery of a particular subject.Compensation and Redress: Payment, or other means of making amends, for a wrong or injury.Lawyers: Persons whose profession is to give legal advice and assistance to clients and represent them in legal matters. (American Heritage Dictionary, 3d ed)Obstetrics: A medical-surgical specialty concerned with management and care of women during pregnancy, parturition, and the puerperium.Medical Errors: Errors or mistakes committed by health professionals which result in harm to the patient. They include errors in diagnosis (DIAGNOSTIC ERRORS), errors in the administration of drugs and other medications (MEDICATION ERRORS), errors in the performance of surgical procedures, in the use of other types of therapy, in the use of equipment, and in the interpretation of laboratory findings. Medical errors are differentiated from MALPRACTICE in that the former are regarded as honest mistakes or accidents while the latter is the result of negligence, reprehensible ignorance, or criminal intent.National Practitioner Data Bank: A databank established by the Health Care Quality Improvement Act of 1986 authorizing the Department of Health and Human Services to collect and release information on the professional competence and conduct of physicians, dentists, nurses, and other health care practitioners. The data include adverse actions on physicians' malpractice, licensure, hospital privileges, concealing of pertinent information, and the like.Legislation, Medical: Laws and regulations, pertaining to the field of medicine, proposed for enactment or enacted by a legislative body.Insurance Carriers: Organizations which assume the financial responsibility for the risks of policyholders.Economics, Medical: Economic aspects of the field of medicine, the medical profession, and health care. It includes the economic and financial impact of disease in general on the patient, the physician, society, or government.Contracts: Agreements between two or more parties, especially those that are written and enforceable by law (American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 4th ed). It is sometimes used to characterize the nature of the professional-patient relationship.Economics, Dental: Economic aspects of the dental profession and dental care.Risk Management: The process of minimizing risk to an organization by developing systems to identify and analyze potential hazards to prevent accidents, injuries, and other adverse occurrences, and by attempting to handle events and incidents which do occur in such a manner that their effect and cost are minimized. Effective risk management has its greatest benefits in application to insurance in order to avert or minimize financial liability. (From Slee & Slee: Health care terms, 2d ed)Physicians: Individuals licensed to practice medicine.Jurisprudence: The science or philosophy of law. Also, the application of the principles of law and justice to health and medicine.MaineMedicine: The art and science of studying, performing research on, preventing, diagnosing, and treating disease, as well as the maintenance of health.United StatesNegotiating: The process of bargaining in order to arrive at an agreement or compromise on a matter of importance to the parties involved. It also applies to the hearing and determination of a case by a third party chosen by the parties in controversy, as well as the interposing of a third party to reconcile the parties in controversy.Gynecology: A medical-surgical specialty concerned with the physiology and disorders primarily of the female genital tract, as well as female endocrinology and reproductive physiology.Insurance Claim Review: Review of claims by insurance companies to determine liability and amount of payment for various services. The review may also include determination of eligibility of the claimant or beneficiary or of the provider of the benefit; determination that the benefit is covered or not payable under another policy; or determination that the service was necessary and of reasonable cost and quality.Neurosurgery: A surgical specialty concerned with the treatment of diseases and disorders of the brain, spinal cord, and peripheral and sympathetic nervous system.American Medical Association: Professional society representing the field of medicine.Insurance: Coverage by contract whereby one part indemnifies or guarantees another against loss by a specified contingency.Specialization: An occupation limited in scope to a subsection of a broader field.Physician Impairment: The physician's inability to practice medicine with reasonable skill and safety to the patient due to the physician's disability. Common causes include alcohol and drug abuse, mental illness, physical disability, and senility.Iatrogenic Disease: Any adverse condition in a patient occurring as the result of treatment by a physician, surgeon, or other health professional, especially infections acquired by a patient during the course of treatment.Cost Control: The containment, regulation, or restraint of costs. Costs are said to be contained when the value of resources committed to an activity is not considered excessive. This determination is frequently subjective and dependent upon the specific geographic area of the activity being measured. (From Dictionary of Health Services Management, 2d ed)Governing Board: The group in which legal authority is vested for the control of health-related institutions and organizations.Group Practice: Any group of three or more full-time physicians organized in a legally recognized entity for the provision of health care services, sharing space, equipment, personnel and records for both patient care and business management, and who have a predetermined arrangement for the distribution of income.Traumatology: The medical specialty which deals with WOUNDS and INJURIES as well as resulting disability and disorders from physical traumas.Specialties, Surgical: Various branches of surgical practice limited to specialized areas.Institute of Medicine (U.S.): Identifies, for study and analysis, important issues and problems that relate to health and medicine. The Institute initiates and conducts studies of national policy and planning for health care and health-related education and research; it also responds to requests from the federal government and other agencies for studies and advice.Health Care Reform: Innovation and improvement of the health care system by reappraisal, amendment of services, and removal of faults and abuses in providing and distributing health services to patients. It includes a re-alignment of health services and health insurance to maximum demographic elements (the unemployed, indigent, uninsured, elderly, inner cities, rural areas) with reference to coverage, hospitalization, pricing and cost containment, insurers' and employers' costs, pre-existing medical conditions, prescribed drugs, equipment, and services.Fees and Charges: Amounts charged to the patient as payer for health care services.Peer Review, Health Care: The concurrent or retrospective review by practicing physicians or other health professionals of the quality and efficiency of patient care practices or services ordered or performed by other physicians or other health professionals (From The Facts On File Dictionary of Health Care Management, 1988).Anesthesiology: A specialty concerned with the study of anesthetics and anesthesia.State Health Plans: State plans prepared by the State Health Planning and Development Agencies which are made up from plans submitted by the Health Systems Agencies and subject to review and revision by the Statewide Health Coordinating Council.Practice Management, Medical: The organization and operation of the business aspects of a physician's practice.Professional Autonomy: The quality or state of being independent and self-directing, especially in making decisions, enabling professionals to exercise judgment as they see fit during the performance of their jobs.
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