Dentistry

Professional Education
Anesthesia Care Preventing Dental Injury
Dental injury claims continue to make up almost a quarter of all anesthesiology claims (22 percent) with over 30 percent of tooth damage claims resulting in indemnity payments to the plaintiff. Due to the frequent occurrence of dental injury claims, anesthesia professionals must be aware of dental injury causes, preventive measures, and steps to take if injury occurs.
0.8 credit

Oct 20, 2022
Job Shadowing: Observers, Volunteers, and Students in Clinical Settings
Kim Hathaway, MSN, CPHRM, Patient Safety Healthcare Quality and Risk Management Consultant, The Doctors Company
Create guidelines to prevent practice risks, eliminate patient harm, and protect patient privacy.

Oct 18, 2022
Moderate or Conscious Sedation in the Office Setting
Julie Brightwell, JD, RN, Director, Healthcare System Patient Safety, Department of Patient Safety and Risk Management
Prevent patient injury when providing moderate sedation in the office by incorporating these patient safety and practice improvement strategies.

Professional Education
Reducing the Risk of a Malpractice Claim
This enduring program is designed to assist physicians, dentists, and advanced practice clinicians, improve patient safety by providing information on how to implement a root cause analysis (RCA2) when a near-miss, or injury has been identified. Real cases serve as examples of how sustainable change can minimize human and environmental factors while decreasing system failures and reducing the risk of a malpractice claim.
1.0 credit

Jul 28, 2022
Defensible Medical and Dental Records
Richard F. Cahill, JD, Vice President and Associate General Counsel, The Doctors Company
Patient records, which serve a critical function in healthcare delivery and routine clinical operations, can provide key evidence in the event of a professional liability action.

Jun 22, 2022
Patient Safety in Dentistry: Communication
Sue Boisvert, BSN, MHSA, DFASHRM, Senior Patient Safety Risk Manager, The Doctors Company
Effective communication improves teamwork and creates a safer environment for patients. It can also enhance patient engagement and satisfaction and reduce the risk of professional liability claims, even if an adverse event occurs.

Jun 22, 2022
Patient Safety in Dentistry Series
The articles in this three-part series provide strategies to help dental professionals enhance communication and documentation skills and manage adverse events in a practice setting.

Jun 22, 2022
Patient Safety in Dentistry: Documentation
Sue Boisvert, BSN, MHSA, DFASHRM, Senior Patient Safety Risk Manager, The Doctors Company
The primary purpose of documentation is to create an orderly chronological record of the clinical decision-making process, treatment provided, and patient responses. Records that are incomplete or inaccurate may lead to inappropriate treatment and patient harm.

Jun 22, 2022
Patient Safety in Dentistry: Managing Adverse Events in the Practice Setting
Sue Boisvert, BSN, MHSA, DFASHRM, Senior Patient Safety Risk Manager, The Doctors Company, and Jon Pellett, Attorney, Pennington, PA
When an adverse event occurs in a dental practice, providers and staff must be prepared to respond appropriately. A well-managed response includes caring for the patient, investigating the event, taking necessary action, and reporting the event appropriately as required.

Professional Education
Administrative and Regulatory Actions: Protecting Your Practice
Healthcare practitioners, including physicians, dentists, and advanced practice clinicians, need to understand the roles of their professional licensing board and state and federal agencies to protect the public.
0.5 credit

Professional Education
Understanding and Preventing Adverse Events (HRA)
This enduring activity will explore patient safety and quality through multiple lenses. The initial session addresses the value of understanding adverse events, the second session focuses on engaging the C-suite, and the third covers teaching these topics to students, residents, attending, and other healthcare professionals.
1.3 credits

Jan 10, 2022
Management of Treatment Complications in Dentistry
When treatment complications occur, it is often how the situation is handled that determines the outcome for both the patient and the healthcare provider. These strategies can help dental professionals enhance safety and mitigate risk.

Jan 05, 2022
Referral and Negligent Referral in a Dental Practice
We outline actionable strategies to help dental professionals keep patients safe and avoid potential liability when referring patients to specialty providers.

Professional Education
Safe Opioid Prescribing for Physicians and Dentists
Opioids play an important role in pain management—both in the acute and the chronic setting, but a variety of causes have contributed to an opioid-related epidemic leading to addiction and death. There has also been substantial misuse of opioids by prescription and by diversion.
2.5 credits

Dec 02, 2021
Dental Case Studies
The case studies presented here provide insights into closed claim scenarios that can help dental professionals enhance their practices as they mitigate risks.

Nov 19, 2021
Medical Emergencies in the Dental Setting
We present a compelling case example and outline risk management strategies that can help practices prepare for medical emergencies.

Nov 19, 2021
Unethical Treatment Leads to Lawsuit and Dental Board Action
Our analysis and risk management discussion of a case involving allegations of unethical treatment includes strategies to help dental professionals avoid becoming the focus of an investigation or claim.

Nov 19, 2021
Responding to Requests for Dental Records and the Consequences of Refusing
This risk management discussion can help dental professionals avoid complaints, investigations, and sanctions when they respond to dental record requests.

Nov 19, 2021
Process Failures Lead to Patient Harm in Dentistry
We outline important strategies for documenting the clinical justification for any alternative treatment plan, obtaining informed consent, and providing follow-up care.

Nov 19, 2021
Poor Response to Patient Concerns Contributes to Dental Claim
We offer actionable strategies that can help dental professionals enhance communication and documentation skills.

Nov 19, 2021
Oversedation and Failure to Resuscitate in Dentistry
This case discussion covers risk management issues involving sedation and provides strategies to help practices keep patients safe.

Nov 19, 2021
Inappropriate Dental Care and Delegation During Use of Conscious Sedation Lead to Patient Death
Our discussion of a tragic case includes strategies to help dental professionals avoid patient injury when performing a treatment or procedure involving sedation or anesthesia.

Nov 19, 2021
Failure to Diagnose and Refer Results in Court and Dental Board Action
This case explores the issues surrounding a misdiagnosis claim and outlines steps to help dental professionals avoid these types of allegations.

Nov 19, 2021
Documentation and Scope of Practice Issues in Dentistry
We analyze a case resulting in patient injuries and provide strategies that address documentation and staff protocols.

Professional Education
Prevention of Dental Errors for Dental Practices
Few dental errors are attributed to faulty judgment. More commonly, they are attributed to system failures inherent in healthcare delivery. By drawing on our professional liability closed claims data, we have identified common performance and diagnostic errors: wrong-site surgery, improper performance of dental procedure, wrong or unnecessary treatment or procedure, retention of foreign body during treatment, and diagnosis related. We analyzed loss prevention measures in tandem with the elements necessary to conduct a credible and thorough root cause analysis (RCA) to reduce system failures, respond to sentinel events, prevent dental errors, and improve patient safety. The purpose of this continuing dental education activity is to provide dentists with the most current information regarding the prevention of common performance and diagnostic errors. The course covers: • Identification of the most common quality-of-care violations. • Illustrative case studies detailing prevalent diagnostic and performance errors. • The necessary elements of an RCA. • Safety systems in healthcare organizations. • Risk management measures designed to prevent dental errors and increase patient safety.
2.0 credits

Professional Education
Prevention of Dental Errors for Florida Dental Practices
The purpose of this continuing dental education activity is to provide dentists with the most current information regarding the prevention of common performance and diagnostic errors. The course covers: • Identification of the most common quality-of-care violations. • Illustrative case studies detailing prevalent diagnostic and performance errors. • The necessary elements of an RCA. • Safety systems in healthcare organizations. • Risk management measures designed to prevent dental errors and increase patient safety. This course is specific to Florida statutes and reflects regulations effective in February 2018 for dentists licensed by the Florida Board of Dentistry.
2.0 credits

May 25, 2021
Reduce the Risk of Wrong-Tooth Dental Procedures
Sue Boisvert, BSN, MHSA, Patient Safety Risk Manager II, The Doctors Company
Wrong-site procedures are a common problem in dentistry. A wrong tooth extraction can be prevented with the use of proper protocols, including confirmed communication with referring dentists and documentation of verbal discussions with patients.

Apr 02, 2021
Pre-Procedural Screening and Testing During COVID-19
Throughout the pandemic, surgeons have faced many challenges in adapting to new situations. Now that facilities have resumed elective surgeries, surgeons are facing additional challenges in evaluating and scheduling patients who have recovered from COVID-19. The strategies highlighted here can help ensure a consistent approach in keeping both patients and providers safe.

Mar 29, 2021
Is Your Patient a Victim of Human Trafficking?
Amy Wasdin, RN, CPHRM, Patient Safety Risk Manager II, The Doctors Company
Although trafficking victims rarely find opportunities to interact with others, a visit to a physician or dental practice may provide an opportunity for a victim to receive help. Learn to recognize the signs of human trafficking and know what steps to take.

Mar 24, 2021
Patient Selection for Elective Cosmetic Procedures
James E. Vogel, MD, FACS, Associate Professor of Plastic Surgery, The Johns Hopkins Hospital and School of Medicine, and Susan Shepard, MSN, RN, Senior Director, Patient Safety and Risk Management Education, The Doctors Company
The patient selection process is a valuable tool that can help you reduce risks when you assess prospective patients for elective cosmetic procedures.

Feb 26, 2021
Resources for Elective Procedures During COVID-19
Kim Hathaway, MSN, CPHRM, Patient Safety Healthcare Quality and Risk Management Consultant, and Julie Ritzman, MBA, CPHRM, Vice President, Department of Patient Safety and Risk Management
Your patients most likely want to know about the safety of surgery during the pandemic and what occurs if they contract COVID-19 post-procedure. You may have questions about keeping your staff and patients safe, informing patients about new risks the pandemic has created, and potential liability risks you may be facing.

Feb 23, 2021
Safe Handling of Medical Gas Cylinders
Ernest E. Allen, ARM, CHFM, Senior Patient Safety Risk Manager, The Doctors Company
When incorrectly used, handled, or stored, medical gas cylinders can create dangerous physical and chemical hazards for patients and staff. This review of safety standards can help healthcare facilities and physician and dental offices stay in compliance.

Professional Education
TeamSTEPPS® Teamwork Training in the Office Practice
This course provides an overview of the evidence-based TeamSTEPPS® concepts, tools, and strategies based on the four areas of 1) leadership, 2) mutual support, 3) situation monitoring, and 4) communication. TeamSTEPPS training provides teachable/learnable skills that improve communication and teamwork among healthcare professionals in both acute care and ambulatory care environments.
1.5 credits

Sep 22, 2020
Should Dentists in One Office Have One Malpractice Insurer?
Laura Archer, Vice President of Underwriting for The Doctors Company
One often-overlooked strategy for a group practice is having all dental professionals covered by the same malpractice insurer: With a group policy, a practice can keep up with changes, avoid damaging conflicts, maximize chances for desirable outcomes when claims arise—and even potentially realize a positive impact on premium.

Aug 25, 2020
Distracting Devices in Healthcare: Malpractice Implications
Shelley Rizzo, MSN, CPHRM, Senior Patient Safety Risk Manager
Digital distraction in healthcare is a threat to patient safety and physician well-being. Personal electronic devices can create a digital distraction so engaging that it consumes awareness, potentially preventing healthcare providers from focusing on the primary task at hand—caring for and interacting with patients.

Professional Education
Making an Informed Consent an Informed Choice: Training for Healthcare Professionals
This activity, designed for doctors, nurses, and other providers, examines problems with the process of healthcare informed consent. It describes the principles of informed consent and highlights the benefits gained from a good informed consent process.
2.3 credits

May 28, 2020
Reopening Your Dental Practice During COVID-19
Mariel Kagan, JD, MSN, Patient Safety Risk Manager
Dental offices across the nation are beginning to reopen as part of the federal government’s approach to reopening the economy. Because The Doctors Company is committed to supporting your practice and sharing important information during this unprecedented time, we researched guidelines and recommendations to provide resources for dentists and dental professionals around the country.

May 23, 2020
Providing Dental Services in the Hospital Setting
Amy Wasdin, RN, CPHRM, Patient Safety Risk Manager II, Department of Patient Safety and Risk Management
Because of the infrequency of providing dental care in the hospital setting, many dentists are unfamiliar with hospital and medical staff requirements that apply to the providers who examine and treat inpatients.

Apr 22, 2020
Minor Consent: Challenges for Pediatric Dentistry
Kim Hathaway, MSN, CPHRM, Patient Safety Healthcare Quality and Risk Consultant, Department of Patient Safety and Risk Management
Identifying legal guardianship and the rights of parents can reduce risk prior to treating a minor.

Aug 27, 2019
Electronic Health Records Continue to Lead to Medical Malpractice Suits
Darrell Ranum, JD, Vice President of Patient Safety and Risk Management
We analyzed 216 medical malpractice claims that closed from 2010 to 2018 in which EHRs contributed to patient injury. The pace of these claims grew, from a low of seven cases in 2010 to an average of 22.5 cases per year in 2017 and 2018. As EHRs approach near-universal adoption, they may become a more prevalent source of patient safety risk.

Aug 28, 2017
The Search for Mary Smith
David B. Troxel, MD, Medical Director, Board of Governors
A case study illustrating the importance of researching healthcare technologies thoroughly before implementing them.
From The Doctor’s Advocate

Mar 16, 2017
Analysis of Medication-Related Claims from The Doctors Company
David B. Troxel, MD, Medical Director, Board of Governors
Dr. David Troxel reviews 1,770 closed by The Doctors Company in which patient harm involved medication factors.
From The Doctor’s Advocate

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