Error in medicine is not an uncommon occurrence. When errors occur in the emergency department setting, physicians should anticipate patient needs and provide an adequate disclosure of the error events. This chapter discusses the ethical implications of error disclosure including patient trust, autonomy, and the duty to disclose. It also provides a structured framework for the disclosure conversation and a mnemonic (HEEAL-Honesty, Empathy, Explanation, Apology, Lessen the chance for future errors) to facilitate the practitioner's dialog with the patient as well as with other providers.
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