Second opinion is a decision-support tool for ratification or modification of a suggested treatment, by another physician. Second opinion may have a critical influence on the diagnosis, treatment and prognosis. The patient can benefit from treatment optimization and avoid unnecessary risks. The physician can benefit from less exposure to legal claims, and healthcare organizations can benefit from increased treatment, quality assurance and costs saving from unnecessary surgery and treatments. Nevertheless, injudicious use of this tool can provoke unnecessary medical costs.
In recent years, many patients prefer to seek a second opinion on their disease and available treatments. Although second opinions are common in medical practice, relatively little is known on this subject. Most of the studies reviewed evaluated the clinical benefit of second opinions, the reasons patients seek a second opinion and the characteristics of these patients, as well as technological interventions to promote second opinions, and ethical or legal issues related to second opinions.
Yet, there are opportunities for further studies about physicians attitudes and barriers towards second opinions, their effect on patient-physician communication and cost-effectiveness analyses of second opinions. Due to the relevance of second opinions for public heath, this review aims to summarize the current research on second opinions.
When you or your loved one is diagnosed with a medical condition how do you go about taking a second opinion? You ask your family and friends who may or may not be qualified to match the right physician for you. There is no best doctor in the world, it’s a question of who is the best for you and your condition.
Click here for Why Seek a Second Opinion?
A second opinion can help you:
- Ensure your diagnosis is correct
- Select a treatment plan that is best for you
- Learn about clinical trials
- Understand your condition better
- Get answers to your questions
- Become an informed, active partner in your healthcare
- Find peace of mind
- Medical Legal cases are cases of a nature which asks a medical doctor to evaluate the claim against the medical care given to a patient. Several circumstances may necessitate this service:
- Medical malpractice
- Medical Negligence
- Insurance claims
- Workman’s compensation
- Wrongful death
Traditional second opinion services offer an unbiased second opinion based on the information you present such as medical records and diagnostic scans regarding your medical condition. Cases of medical legal nature will review the medical records you submit and review them based on the legal enforcement of quality of care, using the best medical practices to make a determination.
Many legal cases require having certain forms reviewed or signed by the Medical Doctor providing evaluation. It is important to have complete medical records for cases of this nature. Depending upon the type of claim that you are submitting the evaluation period may be extended. Because of the legal nature of these cases, we do recommend you seek legal council. Second Opinions consults with a law firm in order to maintain the integrity of our doctors when reviewing cases of this nature.
Our Specialists will decline any invitation for legal appearance related to these reviews. They are being provided as a consultation service. All Medical Second Opinions including Medical Legal cases are an official written report which can be included in your medical records and may be used as such. Phone consultations are not included in Medical Legal cases unless separate phone consultation services are purchased.
Medical legal cases have a higher price because of their legal nature. The amount of review required for these cases can be excessive and require more time for evaluation. Second Opinion Specialists may choose to decline these cases. We always reassign cases that are declined, complicated cases require highly qualified specialists. Second Opinions doctors do not form a patient relationship for any reason. Our services do not include an initial diagnosis.
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Medical Second Opinion comprises of following activities :-
- E-medical records
- Medical History Analysis
- Medical Emergency support
- Medical Insurance
- Medical Advisory
- Health goal monitoring
- Optional medical escort
- Individual Analysis and health Goals
- Case Management
- Health Advocate
ACER is pleased to be in a position to help you access highly specialized care from leading Indian Specialists. Our medical team studies all your medical data and suggests disease based specialists based on your needs. We help you obtain an expert second opinion and understand your treatment options.
At ACER it’s as easy as it can be. We’re completely online, right at your fingertips. No unnecessary tasks such as driving to the doctor’s clinic or sitting in a waiting room, you remain in the comfort of your own home. It’s simple. Just request a consultation and our experts will take care of the rest. You’ll have an accurate and reliable second medical opinion, you’ll not waste any time getting it, and you’ll be amazed at how little it will cost.
Second opinions help to provide confirmation of a patient’s diagnosis and prognosis as well as provide an alternative perspective on their disease or the available treatment options. Second opinion can be sought in the following ways:
- Face to face consults
- Written second opinions
- Sophisticated Video Conferencing aided by state of the art medical cameras and devices
We understand how challenging it is to store, upload and transfer your medical records. Our unique cloud based document management system is managed by an efficient health care team which takes responsibility to:
- Digitize all the paper medical records
- Upload all the images, scans and videos
- Store and forward all medical documents to the consulting medical institution
- Clinical liaison with super-specialist doctors and hospitals across India
- Ensure highest level of patient satisfaction through the medium of consultation chosen
This service is applicable to only cases which involves surgery or major medical procedures.
You will receive responses in the form of Email. Hence it is important to fill correct Email Id and Mobile Number.
All the information provided by you will remain confidential. It will be shared only with panel of doctors.
Please upload the reports so that doctors can arrive at the appropriate opinion.
Questions to the doctor should be clearly articulated.
When providing brief description, please specify your health conditions, existing medications and symptoms, if any.
Attach medical report — choose your specialist
Remember, our second opinion could be your first line of defense!
If you have an emergency, please visit the nearest hospital immediately.
Ethical and legal implications arise both when seeking a second medical opinion and when providing one. There has been debate as to whether a second opinion for a patient is a right or a concession and whilst today most would consider it to be a patient’s right, there are nevertheless some disadvantages associated with seeking a second opinion.
Medical malpractice, like most personal injury cases, is always based on negligence. The patient can only win a medical malpractice lawsuit if he/she proves that the physician was negligent (i.e., the doctor did not act reasonably or with the skill and care that a reasonably qualified doctor would have demonstrated under similar circumstances.).
The following are the most common categories for medical malpractice:
- negligence affecting pregnancy and childbirth
- mistakes in prescribing or administering medication
- surgical errors
Misdiagnosis can occur with complex conditions (like those listed above) because patients do not always have the textbook list of symptoms. The consequences of misdiagnosis can be life-threatening or even fatal because the physician has been spending valuable time treating the wrong condition.
Medical malpractice relating to medication is extremely common. Medication errors can result from administering the wrong medication or from administering too much or too little medication.
Mistakes by the surgeon or anesthesiologist during the surgery are not unusual. The most common surgical errors are damaging a nerve, failing to control bleeding, and leaving a foreign body (like a medical sponge) inside the patient. But surgeons have also, believe it or not, performed the wrong operation, sometimes on the wrong part of the body or occasionally on the wrong patient entirely. The most common locations for surgical error are the gastrointestinal tract and the spine.
Myths about getting second opinion
Myth #1: Second opinions are unnecessary
According to research, an estimated 10%-20% of cases are misdiagnosed. To compound the issue, almost 30% of diagnostic mistakes were life threatening or had resulted in death or permanent disability.
These days, we seek multiple opinions prior to making any decision in our lives. Why should your healthcare be treated any differently?
Consult a specialist for a second opinion to verify the initial diagnosis and treatment plan, and be secure in your decision.
Myth #2: Having to seek a second opinion means that I have to get more tests done
With our panel of doctors case management features, all of your medical records and images are securely stored and can be easily shared with specialists electronically. Your new provider may requests for new types of tests, but all previous exams and records can be shared to avoid repeat scans and tests.
Myth #3: My doctor will be upset
Most doctors welcome other doctors’ opinions. The American College of Surgeons says that getting a second opinion before surgery is good medical practice, and doctors shouldn’t be offended when a patient asks for one.
“You know, this is a big decision for me, and I would like to talk with another expert so that I feel completely confident in our treatment plan”
Myth #4: It will be expensive
When second opinions find a less invasive approach (like using a tiny incision and a scope instead of making a large opening) or one that can be done as an outpatient, they can save you pain and recovery time. And they may cut out the cost of overnight hospital stays.
Myth #5: It’s too difficult. It takes so long to get an appointment—and there’s so much running around and paperwork involved
If you get a second opinion within the same healthcare system, it may streamline the process. Second opinion program staff can help identify a doctor or doctors; collect medical records and other test results, images, and pathology slides for you; and send them to the second provider. With a coordinated team approach, the process can be very efficient.
Myth #6: My health condition isn’t life threatening, so I shouldn’t bother
No matter your condition – life-threatening or not – you should feel comfortable and confident with your diagnosis and treatment.