Course: Risk Management Consult: Managing the Risks of Defensive Medicine
Author: Rosemary Gafner and James Schutte
AMA PRA Category 1 credits: 6
Estimated Hours to Complete Course: 5.50
Estimated Minutes to Complete Test: 30
Course Release Date: 8/1/2014
Course Expiration Date: 12/31/2021
How defensive medicine can adversely affect patient care.

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Risk Management Consult
Managing the Risks of Defensive Medicine


Defensive medicine not only drives up the cost of medical care, it actually increases your liability exposure. It can also cost you financially: if you work in a hospital-owned practice or contract with any managed care organizations, there is increasing pressure for them to weed out physicians with excessive utilization patterns.


Upon completion of this course, a physician should be able to:

1.  Explain how defensive medicine actually increases a physician’s liability exposure.
2.  Describe how following evidence-based guidelines improves diagnostic and treatment efficiency while lowering your likelihood of being sued.
3.  Explain how electronic health records and Accountable Care Organizations can be used to reduce utilization while improving patient care.
4.  Use the informed consent process to engage the patient in decisions about which tests and procedures are ordered in a way that reduces utilization while improving patient satisfaction and lowering your potential liability.

Target Audience
This course is designed for physicians of all specialties.


This is a self-study course consisting of text and CME test.  Physicians should read the course content, answer the test questions and submit the answers for scoring.  Those who complete the course with a score of 80 percent or higher will earn a maximum of 6 AMA PRA Category 1 creditsTM.


This course was developed by Rosemary Gafner, Ed.D. and James E. Schutte, Ph.D.  Their CVs are available at

CME Information

Medical Risk Management, Inc. is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing education for physicians.  Medical Risk Management, Inc. designates this  enduring material  for a maximum of 6 AMA PRA Category 1 creditsTM.  Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

Estimated time to complete this activity: 6 hours.

Commercial Support

This activity was developed solely by Medical Risk Management, Inc. without any commercial support.


Neither Dr. Gafner nor Dr. Schutte have anything to disclose.

Please check with your insurance carrier for approved courses before registering.  Courses not approved by your insurance carrier will not be accepted by them for any discounts they may offer.