Practice Management Book


Treating Family Members

Aka: Treating Family Members
  1. Precautions
    1. Do not write controlled substance prescriptions (e.g. Opioids, Benzodiazepines) for family or friends
    2. Some state laws in U.S. prohibit prescribing to self or family
    3. Home treatment of minor symptoms is reasonable
      1. Notify primary provider of medications prescribed outside of their care
      2. However, major symptoms are best treated with formal evaluations
      3. Avoid prescribing chronic medications for self, friends or family
      4. Risk if adverse events occur
    4. Rendered care may be sub-standard of the care you would deliver to others
      1. Clinician may not ask their family member sensitive questions
      2. Clinician may stretch their care beyond their level of expertise
      3. Family members may have misconceptions or unrealistic expectations and perceive a poor outcome
      4. Trying to please a family member may result in altering care from best practice with a worse outcome
  2. References
    1. Weinstock, Sharkis, Marks and Herbert in Herbert (2016) EM:Rap 16(6): 15-6
    2. (2019) Presc Lett 26(5)

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