Knowledge Library

How to Discharge a Patient from Your Medical Practice

Patients can “fire” any physician they employ, and can do so for any reason and without advance notice. As physicians do not employ patients, they cannot “fire” them. But physicians can discharge patients from their medical practice for any legitimate and non-discriminatory reason, and thus terminate the doctor-patient relationship. Whether the end of the doctor-patient relationship is initiated by a patient or the physician, some safeguards should be taken to ensure that the separation is legally proper and does not endanger the patient. Physicians or their staff who have general questions about discharging patients can contact our Patient Safety &...

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How to Manage Non-Adherent Patients

Patients who are non-adherent (formerly referred to as “difficult” or “non-compliant”) with their physician’s recommendations or medical advice risk injury to themselves and pose a liability threat for their physician. Non-adherent patients typically are those who do not follow post-treatment instructions; don’t keep appointments; don’t report information about worsening symptoms; fail to follow through on referrals to a specialist; don’t get recommended diagnostic tests; or don’t take their medications properly. Reasons for non-adherence Non-adherence is not always a deliberate act. Among the reasons some patients may not follow the doctor’s advice: They didn’t understand instructions; They forgot the doctor’s oral...

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Closing A Medical Practice Upon Retirement

When physicians decide to close their medical practice, whether due to retirement, change in practice, or a career change, several questions come up. Common issues include how to smoothly transition patients to another provider, who to notify, and what should be done with medical records. This article will address some of those questions.   Attorney Consultation Physicians who plan to retire and sell their medical practice should consider consulting with an attorney who specializes in business and/or healthcare law for advice on signing sales contracts, determining appropriate compensation, selling office equipment, etc. Among other things, the attorney may advise that...

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