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Over the past few years there has been a significant rise in medical negligence claims in private and public sectors. According to one of the medical malpractice insurers ‘the cost of reported claims more than doubled over a recent 2-year period prior to 2013. Claims exceeding R1 million have increased by nearly 550% compared with those of 10 years ago, while claims valued at over R5 million have increased by 900% in the past 5 years.’
The escalation is not only on medical negligence claims, there is also an escalation of health professionals being charged and convicted of unprofessional conduct by the Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPCSA). There is also an increase in allegations of health professionals involved or accused of medical schemes fraud.
The curriculum used to train health professionals does not put extra emphasis on ethics, professionalism and the medical law. These courses are at best electives. The rationale for developing this specific dedicated Medical Ethics and Law course derives from the challenges outlined above.
After working through this course the health care practitioner should be able:
This course is comprised of 5 modules
1. Introduction to Medical Ethics
The purpose of this module is to introduce the health professional to Ethics that govern the practice of medicine. The module puts emphasis on the importance of the doctor patient relationship.
2. The interface between the Practice of Medicine and the Ethical Principles
Every interaction between a health professional and a patient is littered with ethical dilemmas. This module empowers the health professional with knowledge on how to navigate the ethical dilemmas he/she faces when interacting with patients.
3. The intersection between Medicine and the Law
The interaction between a health professional and a patient is a legal interaction. This module outlines the legal principles that govern this interaction.
4. Medical Malpractice and Professional Indemnity Cover
Over the last few years medical malpractice litigations have escalated. This module empowers the health professional with knowledge of what is deemed to be a negligent conduct from the perspective of the courts and also the options with regards to professional indemnity cover.
5. Risk Management in Healthcare
With the escalation in medical malpractice litigations, risk management in healthcare needs to play a prominent role. The purpose of the module is to educate the health practitioner on the practical steps they can take in reducing or mitigating medical malpractise risk.
Participants are assessed by means of a multiple-choice questionnaire.
Accredited according to the HPCSA’s Medical and Dental Board Guidelines for Healthcare Professionals for 8 Ethical CEU’s on Level 2
To qualify for the certificate of completion, delegates have to complete and pass the online course questionnaire.
The course is available on a scholarship basis.
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