Medical Error Prevention for Mental Health Professionals

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Co-developed by Lenore E. A. Walker, Ed.D. and David Shapiro, Ph.D.

Requirement Icon

Course is approved by the Florida Board of Psychology and by the Florida Board of Clinical Social Work, Marriage and Family Therapy and Mental Health Counseling for the Medical Error Prevention requirement.

This course is not eligible for NBCC credit

General Course Description

This introductory course is designed specifically for the mental health professional to help reduce the possibility of medical errors in one’s practice. Included is pertinent information on types of medical errors, populations at greatest risk, and the process of root cause analysis. The authors share their expertise in preventing diagnostic and treatment errors, assessing risk, record-keeping and reducing adverse reactions to medications. Risk assessment for suicide and violence to others, mandatory reporting of abuse, confidentiality, informed consent, and the need for multi-cultural sensitivity are addressed. Valuable resources are provided to augment the information presented. This brief overview provides a practical guide for the mental health practitioner in a variety of settings. Additional resources and references are provided for further study, but they are not part of the course.


Educational Objectives:

    This course will teach the participant to

  • Describe what constitutes a medical error for behavioral health providers and to describe the elements involved in conducting a root cause analysis when an error occurs.
  • Explain specific steps to prevent systemic, diagnostic and treatment errors and implement record-keeping guidelines that help prevent errors.

Course Syllabus:

  • What is a Medical Error in a Behavioral Health Setting?
  • Adverse Events, Sentinel Events and Root Cause Analysis
  • Principles of Error Reduction
  • Reducing Errors in Diagnosis for Mental Health Professionals
  • High Risk Clients
  • Risk Assessment
  • Mandatory Reporting: Child Abuse, Elderly and Disabled
  • Confidentiality and Informed Consent
  • Record-Keeping
  • Reduction of Adverse Medication Events
  • Human Behavioral Factors
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Cost: $24.00

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