Warning Signs of an Incompetent Doctor

January 14, 2013 | Crandall & Pera Law
Warning Signs of an Incompetent Doctor

Nearly half of U.S. physicians experience symptoms of burnout - think exhaustion and depression - according to a new study in the journal Archives of Internal Medicine.

When a physician has the life of you or a loved one in his or her hands, it is of the utmost importance that they are functioning at the highest level of competency. Here are four questions to ask yourself about your doctor in order to determine whether or not it is time to look elsewhere: 

1. Is he/she a team player?
A good doctor presents options, makes a specific recommendation -- going with a surgical procedure or medication -- and explains why he or she believes it's the best. Beware of doctors who have little time for questions, or say things like, "This is really the only way."

2. Does he/she communicate well?
When it comes to coordinating with other physicians, check that your doctor is talking to other providers involved in your care. If your physician is asking whether you've had a certain procedure done or what treatments you've had, it's clear he or she hasn't reviewed your file.

3. Is he/she up to date?
Burnout means exhaustion, which could mean your doctor is behind on recent medical journals or the latest technology. Your physician should be willing to work with information you present him or her, and share an educated opinion.

4. Does he/she pay attention?
Look for body language that your physician is all there -- facing you, looking up frequently even when entering information into files, nodding, and maintaining eye contact. Read more here:

Should you fire your doctor? 4 signs to watch

"Physicians are wrongly protected by tort reform laws, allowing thousands of cases of medical malpractice to go unchecked each year," says Steve Crandall, a medical malpractice attorney in Ohio and Kentucky.

Patients throughout the United States are injured by failure to diagnose cancer, birth trauma and birth injuries and lose family members to wrongful death while their physicians are protected by laws designed to cap damages even though malpractice occurred. If you feel you have suffered from medical malpractice, call the offices of Crandall & Pera Law today. We have offices in Cleveland, Cincinnati, Toledo, Columbus, and Chagrin Falls, Ohio, as well as Louisville and Lexington, Kentucky.

If you have questions about our practice areas, we invite you to learn more by clicking these links:

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