Patient Harm may be a Larger Concern than Malpractice Litigation for Health Care Workers

In a study of 1,2222 Emergency Department clinicians (MDs, NPs, and Pas) in acute care settings in Massachusetts suggests that fear of patient harm is a greater motivator than fear of being sued.

The paper, title Perspectives of Emergency Clinicians About Medical Errors Resulting in Patient Harm or Malpractice Litigation, suggests that health care worker's fear of harming patients was a greater concern than the fear of legal action. These findings were regardless of clinician subtypes, experience, or sex.

With a distinguished legal career spanning over 35 years, Marlene Garvis has been involved in nearly all aspects of health care, including being the Chair of the Health Law Practice Group at a Twin Cities law firm, a past President of the Hennepin County Bar Foundation, past President of Minnesota Women Lawyers and a Founding Fellow of the Hennepin County Bar Foundation.

Marlene has been a frequent speaker on health law, health care, nurse licensing and regulatory matters, as well as employment issues for nurses. She is an adjunct professor at Mitchell Hamline Law School in St. Paul, has been an adjunct faculty member of the University of Minnesota School of Nursing and continues to speak to nursing students at St. Catherine University.

Marlene has represented clients in litigation, consultation and administrative proceedings for health care professional licensure, employment litigation, discipline and regulatory proceedings and nurse licensure hearings. To see Marlene's full professional bio, please visit

Marlene is a member of The American Association of Nurse Lawyers, specializing in nurse licensure hearings in Minnesota, Wisconsin and Iowa as well as other legal issues in health care industry.