Templated Exams: A Dangerous Everyday Practice

Did you know that an everyday healthcare practice can lead to extended illness and injury for you or your loved one?

Every day, doctors and other healthcare workers are pressured to get through their patient lists faster. This is because the more patients a clinic sees, the more money they make. This pressure can obviously have an extremely detrimental effect on patient care in general in terms of creating relationships between doctor and patient. Even more critically, it can lead to doctors missing symptoms and therefore leaving patients to suffer and worsen in health.

What Are Templated Exams?

Max True was a two-year-old who had just started his first few weeks in day care. As is common, several kids in his day care were sick with the flu and strep throat; unfortunately, unbeknownst to his parents, Max caught strep throat. Max’s parents took care of him at home for several days and then took him to a local urgent care for testing. Max was only seen for several minutes by a very rushed physician, after which he was quickly diagnosed with a virus and sent home. No strep throat test was done, despite many symptoms that made it likely this is what he had. Max’s strep throat evolved into sepsis and septic shock, which occurs when the bacterial infection spreads throughout the body. Max was brought back to a hospital two days later, but by then the infection resulted in brain damage and the necessity of having both legs and both arms amputated. Crandall & Pera Law’s own Steve Crandall filed a lawsuit on behalf of Max and his entire family and was able to successfully obtain a $15M settlement. This settlement will allow crucial future medical care, including a specially equipped van, a specially outfitted home, prosthetics and therapy, to be provided to Max for his continued improvement.

When investigating, Attorney Crandall found out that the doctor in this case was using a template during the exam, leading to him missing or ignoring symptoms. This is unfortunately a common practice to hurry along physicians. The doctors are given a pre-filled template and it is up to them to change what’s already been entered. It’s extremely easy to miss things and skip steps when you’re working off a template such as this. Why would a physician use a template? Many physicians are paid a bonus based on how quickly they treat a patient and discharge them. A template helps them speed along the visit, to make more money.

What Does This Mean For You?

If you’re going to the doctor, make your visit count. Ask your doctor questions and ask to see the notes from your exam. Advocate for yourself and your family, and if you or your loved one is harmed by a doctor’s negligence, contact Crandall & Pera Law, LLC.