Ohio medical residents sit in the hot seat in mock malpractice trials

No doctor wants to be deposed in court on a malpractice case, but these cases do end up in court. Medical residents at OhioHealth Grant Medical Center in Columbus will be better prepared as a result of a collaborative mock deposition program with nearby Capital Law School.

The goal with the mock depositions--and the nerves it generates among budding doctors and lawyers alike--is to create an opportunity for medical residents to experience what it feels like to sit on the witness stand and provide testimony about the care they provide.

While the cases are made up, these are future lawyers who are deposing medical residents, Sarah Sams, M.D., associate director of the medical center's family medicine residency program, told The Columbus (Ohio) Dispatch.

“It’s interesting and nerve-racking at the same time, being deposed,” Joann Tao, M.D., a medical resident who was recently grilled in a mock deposition, told the newspaper. “As medical students, we’re not really exposed to the malpractice part of things. But it’s built into us that, at some point, you will be sued, so it’s a really good experience to see what it means to be deposed.”

The program--now in its second year--provides medical residents with a valuable opportunity to learn about properly documenting patient cases, according to Sams.