Communicating With Your Patient About Harm


Communicating With Your Patient About Harm


This guide for health care professionals provides advice on communicating with patients if an unanticipated poor clinical outcome has occurred during care, particularly in the difficult circumstances in which health care delivery is suspected or known to have contributed to that poor outcome. Effective communication can improve patient outcomes and satisfaction and reduce harm, misunderstandings, complaints, and lawsuits.

The guide is divided into the following sections:

  • Introduction
  • First things first: Attend to clinical care
  • Planning the initial disclosure
  • The initial disclosure meeting
  • Post-analysis disclosure
  • Checklist for disclosure
  • Frequently asked questions (FAQs)
  • Terminology


Canadian Medical Protective Association

Funding Sources:

Canadian Medical Protective Association


Release Date: 2008
Original Summary: June 2010
Last Updated: 06/23/10

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