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Next Steps: Continuing Care for our Patients

April 6, 2016


When there is an unexpected death or a bad outcome in the emergency department (ED), patients and their families are left with many questions and concerns about what happened during their care. Some of these questions can be answered during the care encounter, but many cannot.

By reaching out to patients and their families after discharge, the ED staff at St. Joseph Mercy Hospital give them an opportunity to ask these questions and resolve any outstanding concerns. In this session, Drs. Simmons and McCurdy will describe a program that their hospital has developed to address family and patient concerns after ED care.

The objectives for this webinar are:

  • Describe a program to address post-ED questions after unexpected outcomes
  • Discuss the pitfalls to avoid
  • Learn how healthcare reform may affect future malpractice liability
  • Discuss barriers to developing this program and strategies to overcome them


Stefanie Simmons, MD is a research faculty member at St. Joseph Mercy Hospital, a Level 2 trauma center with 85,000 visits per year, in Ann Arbor, MI. She is the head of communication education and presents training to care providers on enhancing patient-provider communication. She is active in research in the areas of patient communication and improving systems of care for patient follow-up and safety.

Robert McCurdy, MD is a graduate of Wayne State Medical School and completed his Emergency Medicine residency at the University of Michigan. Since 1997, he has served worked in the emergency department at St. Joseph Mercy Hospital, serving as department chair since 2011. Dr. McCurdy is also the physician lead for the Next Step program, now in its 5th year, and his primary interest is in physician-patient communication.

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