Are you a physician with a patient who no longer requires medical treatment? Do you have a patient you believe would be better served by another physician, specialist or practice due to a developing condition? Do you want to terminate a patient relationship because it is costing more than it is worth to your practice?
Explore this issueJune 2017
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Dealing with a burdensome or difficult physician–patient relationship can be frustrating and time consuming. But before you terminate the relationship and refuse to see a patient, you should review the essential guidelines below to ensure you are complying with law and to reduce exposure to medical malpractice or abandonment claims.
The Difficult Relationship
A difficult patient relationship can develop for a number of reasons. A patient may be unruly, uncooperative, disruptive or threatening. A patient may not be paying their bills in a timely manner. A patient may be taking up valuable time or resources from your team with unrealistic expectations or demands. A patient’s course of treatment may be complete. The first step in navigating how to end these types of relationships is to understand whether a physician–patient relationship exists.