This document provides a comprehensive and in depth framework that is designed to support both organisations and clinicians in communicating openly with patients when things have not gone to plan. Elements of this guidance are with specific reference to the Australian healthcare and legal systems, but the framework provides helpful and instructive guidance of relevance internationally.
The framework is in two sections. The first provides detailed and practical guidance on how organisations should prepare and implement systems to support open disclosure – including education and training, governance, staff involvement and legal considerations. The second provides specific guidance on actual disclosure practice, from how to identify adverse events, to arranging meetings, to making apologies and providing follow-up and closure.