Managing Communication after Unanticipated Medical Outcomes
When medical care results in adverse events and outcomes—regardless of the cause—the response of organizations and individual clinicians has a powerful effect on all the parties’ ability to communicate about and resolve the situation satisfactorily. Accrediting bodies, professional organizations, state legislatures and compelling research on disclosure and resolution after adverse outcomes all support forthrightness and sensitivity. Malpractice carriers are increasingly recognizing the benefits of candor and early resolution and are encouraging the clinicians they insure to get training to participate effectively in this process.
We recognize that clinicians and healthcare organizations are deeply fearful of malpractice lawsuits. Simply telling clinicians that they “ought to” disclose an unanticipated outcome or error is ineffective. Instead, the ethical, psychological, legal and business cases for disclosure must be made and the skills to carry this through must be effectively conveyed. While all clinicians need to have a solid understanding of these skills, they also need the help of more highly trained disclosure support partners to organize and carry through the steps to effective resolution. These disclosure facilitators or situation managers need additional training beyond the basic skills. Recognizing this, IHC has developed a 1.5-day program, Managing Communication after Unanticipated Medical Outcomes (MCUMO). MCUMO includes IHC’s foundational disclosure workshop, Disclosing Unanticipated Medical Outcomes (DUMO), with additional contextually relevant practice opportunities.
- Duration 1.5 Days
- Accreditation Approved for CE
- Available To Clinicians, Non-Clinicians
- Course InformationDownload PDF
Managing Communication after Unanticipated Medical Outcomes is designed for clinicians, risk managers and administrators responsible for advising clinicians and helping to direct the organizational response when unanticipated medical outcomes occur.
The MCUMO program’s 1.5-day format provides foundational knowledge, communication models and skills for disclosure and transparency in healthcare. In addition, the program includes discussion and information about individual institutional expectations, policies and procedures. The program components include:
1. Foundational Knowledge and Skills: Disclosure workshop
IHC’s 3.5-hour interactive workshop, Disclosing Unanticipated Medical Outcomes is designed to enhance participants’ ability to re-establish trust and rapport in the face of adverse outcomes. Participants will gain a better understanding of organizational, ethical and risk management aspects of disclosure, and will have opportunities to practice key communication skills.
2. Simulation Practice: Managing Communication with Clinicians, Patients and Families
Structured practice opportunities enable learners to explore the complexity of needs and demands placed on patients, families and clinical staff when adverse events occur. The practice sessions build upon the learning and skill-practice from the Disclosure Unanticipated Medical Outcomes workshop. Using actors to portray patients, family members or clinicians, participants practice open communication skills and receive feedback from expert training faculty and peers.
3. Organizational Policies and Procedures
The final component of the MCUMO workshop focuses on risk management and organizational aspects of disclosure at participants’ individual facility or organization. Participants practice facilitating disclosure discussions using contextually accurate cases that call for communication strategies, problem solving and eliciting perspectives from key stakeholders (e.g., legal counsel and risk-management and quality assurance professionals).
By the end of the MCUMO program, participants will:
- Understand and describe the value of greater openness about adverse outcomes.
- Recognize the different ways that patients and families may be disappointed with their healthcare.
- Review the steps to take before, during and after a disappointing outcome.
- Identify communication skills for practice in discussions with patients and families about adverse outcomes.
- Gain awareness of their organization’s disclosure policy.
- Appreciate the different perspectives of clinicians and patients and family members.
Managing Communication after Unanticipated Medical Outcomes provides 11 hours of training over 1.5 consecutive days. Attendance is limited to 25 to ensure full participation and effective interaction. The workshop addresses each aspect of the communication process using brief lectures, a focused review of the salient literature, video practice cases to trigger recognition and skill development, small group practice with actors and discussion to identify and practice the most effective ways of responding both empathically and non-defensively. Cases are presented from various specialty situations and address situations of minor and most serious adverse outcomes and situations where the care was reasonable as well as situations where the standard of care was breached.
The Institute for Healthcare Communication (IHC) takes responsibility for the content, quality and scientific integrity of this CME/CE activity. IHC is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to sponsor continuing medical education for physicians. The Institute for Healthcare Communication designates this 1.5-day Managing Communication after Unanticipated Medical Outcomes course for a maximum of 11 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™.
IHC and the University of Pittsburgh School of Nursing are collaborating to jointly provide this program. Nurses completing the program requirements and submitting an evaluation tool will receive a maximum of 11 continuing nursing education contact hours. The University of Pittsburgh School of Nursing is accredited as a provider of continuing nursing education by the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Commission on Accreditation.
Continuing education (CE) credit may be available to non-physician, non-nurse participants. IHC will provide a certificate of completion, which can be submitted to learners’ respective accrediting organizations. IHC is pleased to provide any necessary documentation to help learners gain CE credits for completion of this activity.