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Preparing to be Deposed III: Being Truly Prepared

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Being deposed is not an experience you come away from wanting to do it again, but when you are well prepared it is an experience that you can come away from realizing it was not as bad as you expected.

Now that we have dealt with scheduling and being paid for your time spent being deposed, it is time to focus on actually getting prepared to be deposed. Being prepared to be deposed will truly make the whole process a lot less stressful and will likely reduce the amount of time spent in deposition.

The first thing you need to do to get yourself prepared is to review your medical records for the patient in question. You will want to pay special attention to the initial visit, last visit and the patient’s status as of the time you last saw them. If you received another provider’s records in the context of your care and treatment of the patient, you should probably be at least familiar with their records as well.

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It is important to keep in mind that if you make any notes to help yourself remember key dates and plan to bring those notes to your deposition that the attorney who is deposing you will likely request to make a copy of your notes. With that in mind your notes should contain only key dates and other factual information rather than personal opinions and comments about the patient that do not appear in the medical records.

If you have retained counsel to represent you at your deposition, you will also want to make the time to meet with your attorney to allow them to help you prepare to be deposed. Your attorney could offer you valuable insight to help the process of being deposed go as smoothly as possible. If you have never been deposed before or if it has been a long time since you have been deposed it might make sense to do some role playing with your attorney by having them ask you questions in a deposition like fashion. Having some real world experience with answering questions is likely to make you feel more prepared for your deposition.

Finally, when the time comes for your actual deposition, be sure to take care of the things that you can control to come across in the best possible light leaving the involved attorneys with the impression that you are a competent, caring, and dedicated healthcare professional. Those things include dressing in a professional manner, showing up on time, and handling yourself in a professional manner during questioning.

Being deposed is not an experience you come away from wanting to do it again, but when you are well prepared it is an experience that you can come away from realizing it was not as bad as you expected.


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