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Can Your Patient Understand Your Instructions?

Approximately half of Americans have reading and computational skill deficiencies that could impede their participation and compliance in health care. This problem raises serious concerns about how well patients with low or marginal literacy are navigating the current health care system.

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Case Study: Failed Physician-Nurse Communication

The patient’s daughter sued three anesthesiologists, the attending surgeon, the ophthalmology fellow, the nurse anesthetist, and the nurse caring for her the evening after her eye surgery, alleging negligence for performing a non-emergent surgical procedure in the presence of an acute respiratory infection and failing to note the patient’s sleep apnea, resulting in her death.

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Informed Consent Basics

Through dialogue and discussion with you, your patients become more knowledgeable partners in medical decision-making and develop realistic expectations about the outcomes of medical intervention. Ideally, informed consent discussions build trust and reduce surprise and disappointment if complications or adverse events occur.

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