I recently completed another malpractice case; one of several this year. (for malpractice cases, my work has always been on the side of the defendant)

LESSONS LEARNED

When faced with a dental malpractice challenge, the saying “I should-a, could-a, would-a” is not a valid defense.

Today’s decisions are based more and more on electronic charts, digital clinical notes and meta-data.

Here are two important things that dentists can do to avoid the feeling of should-a, could-a when a legal challenge knocks on their door.

sign (“lock”) your clinical notes, every day, without fail.

Just do it.

archive YOUR DATA, monthly is good, weekly is better.

A data archive IS NOT a backup of your Dentrix, Open Dental or other software..

A data archive includes both data and meta-data. A syslog server is also recommended.

Your a data archive should contain snapshots of data at each given time.

If you create a monthly archive, then you make archival copies of the data each month.

By the end year 1, your data archive will have 12 archival copies, one for each month of the year.

By the end of 4 years, you will have 48 archival copies.

If you have questions, or need some one-on-one advice, please contact me privately.