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Preventing Lawsuits in Long-Term Care: Strategies for Administrators

presented by Cheryl Lehman, PhD, RN, CRRN, Amy Magnano, JD, and Kristen L. Mauk, PhD, DNP, RN, CRRN, GCNS-BC, GNP-BC, FARN, FAAN

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Disclosure Statement:

Financial: Kristin Mauk, Cheryl Lehman and Amy Magnano receive compensation from MedBridge for this course. There is no financial interest beyond the production of this course.

Non-Financial: Kristin Mauk, Cheryl Lehman and Amy Magnano have no competing non-financial interests or relationships with regard to the content presented in this course.

Satisfactory completion requirements: All disciplines must complete learning assessments to be awarded credit, no minimum score required unless otherwise specified within the course.

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Video Runtime: 47 Minutes

This course discusses the risk factors specific to long-term care administrators that arise during legal action against facilities. Participants will gain an understanding of the legal processes related to lawsuits and how this impacts administration. Examples of legal cases in which leadership staff were asked to testify are presented. Participants will learn strategies of how to reduce the risk of legal action being brought against them personally, as well as reducing risk for their organization. Issues such as what to expect in a deposition are discussed. This course is appropriate for administrators working in any setting, but particularly pertains to those working in long-term care.

Meet Your Instructors

Cheryl Lehman, PhD, RN, CRRN

Dr. Cheryl Lehman has been a registered nurse since graduating from the Decatur Memorial Hospital School of Nursing in 1978. Since that time, she earned a BSN from Maryville University-St. Louis in 1990; an MSN in Adult Health Nursing from the University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB) at Galveston in the Clinical Nurse Specialist role…

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Amy Magnano, JD

Amy represents health care providers and health care facilities in medical liability litigation, complex health care litigation, and licensing and disciplinary litigation. She also represents clients on a wide range of regulatory matters. As part of this latter focus, Amy counsels legal professionals, health care systems and physician groups on compliance with the HIPAA and…

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Dr. Mauk has been a professor of nursing for many years. Prior to moving to Colorado, she was a professor of nursing at a large private university in Indiana for nearly 25 years, and there she held the first Kreft Endowed Chair for the Advancement of Nursing Science, a position dedicated to gerontological nursing. She…

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Chapters & Learning Objectives

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1. Situations That May Result in Lawsuits

Long-term care administrators need to recognize the types of patient situations that may lead to legal action. This chapter reviews this topic via discussion of legal cases in which leadership staff members have been sued. Key factors that triggered real-life cases are included.

2. How to Prevent a Lawsuit

Some basic strategies can help administrators to avoid lawsuits. Monitoring for proper and timely documentation, ensuring charting that shows the standard of care was met, creating policies and procedures that assure quality patient care and protect staff, the importance of continuing education, and other strategies will be discussed.

3. What Happens in a Legal Case and How Should I Respond?

Administrators need to be prepared in the event that a lawsuit is filed that names them as a defendant in a medical malpractice case. These lawsuits can be costly and damage the otherwise good reputation of a facility. This chapter briefly reviews how a case proceeds, from filing of the complaint to going to court. Strategies for responding to a lawsuit as well as how to prepare for a deposition and court testimony are also discussed by a practicing attorney and panel. Real-life case scenarios are provided.

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