Webinar - How to Prepare Medical Experts for Case Review and Expert Witness Testimony

Amy Hanegan joins Medplace to explore the Case Review and Expert Witness Testimony processes.

  • 00:10:11 - 05:10:11

     

    Nestor Carrillo  01:35

    Hi, and welcome everyone. We'll give it a minute or so here before we get started and let the rest of the attendees spill in here. So starting in about a minute or so. All right, everyone, I think we can go ahead and get started. Thank you for joining us and welcome to How to Prepare medical experts for case review and expert witness testimony presented by Medplace. Here's a little bit about our speakers. So we're today we're joined by Adrian Sujay. Our friend BSN MBA and she is the VP of Clinical Operations for mentalist. We're also joined by Amy Hannigan, who is the CEO and President of better witnesses and then we're also joined by Jared Bailey, CEO of Medplace. Here's a little bio about Adrienne so a little bit of background on her Adrienne has been an RN for over 29 years, practicing mainly in the medical ICU and a level one trauma center. During her bedside career. She attended a post baccalaureate, ABA approved full time paralegal program, and she's continued then she continued to work in ICU, while also working for multiple defense law firms and earning over 25 years of experience. Adrian then advanced into Director of Quality and risk at her hospital. She joins Medplace with a unique and thorough understanding of legal requests and requirements for expert medical work and believes strongly in partnering with both the consulting expert and the client to ensure the best possible choices and selecting experts. And here's a bio on Amy Hagen. She's a trial consultant and president of better witnesses Inc, which provides high quality litigation consulting services for medical malpractice, employment and complex lives. Before becoming a trial consultant, Amy worked with Fortune 500 companies to provide training programs and public speaking corporate presentations and sales skills. In 1987, she moved from New York to LA and turned her attention to Trump consulting, where she managed witness preparation programs for litigation sciences, and 93. She joined a prestigious law firm of Williams, Kasner, and Gibbs in Seattle offering trial consulting services in Northwest Northwest legal community. And then in 97, Amy Hannegan established the better witnesses Inc, where she uses compassion, a unique skill set and humor to prepare witnesses for depositions, hearings and trials. Last but not least, Jared Bailey, CEO of marketplace, Jared holds over 20 years of experience in venture backed technology companies. He's an expert operator across technology, development, user experience, design, branding, marketing, capital raising and go to market strategy. Jerry has helped launch over 100 technology startups, including corporate new ventures in with American Express, Intel and other notable names, Jared leads met place a platform where organizations like law firms can connect with top medical consulting experts per case and peer review, expert witness testimony IVs and more. With that, I will turn it over to Jared, to walk through the agenda and the rest of the presentation. Sure. Let me unmute.

     

    Jerrod Bailey  06:28

    Thanks, Nestor, that was great. So I'm not going to be doing a lot of the talking today, I am going to kind of pipe in some, some ideas as we as we discussed, but you know, my technology is about or my background is in technology. So really, my angle is to figure out what a law firms do well, what are your superpowers? And what would happen if you were able to front end and infuse into what you do well, with technology, so as part of our approach for what we do at my place, and you can see, we've got staff that come directly out of law firms. And so the goal is to really say what, what is the next version of an expert witness sourcing and preparation things? What does that look like? What does 2.0 look like? And what is our role in that? What is what are your your roles in that? How can we build it together. So today's going to be specifically unpacking how to prepare doctors for roles, like consultants for case reviews, and then for medical legal work, like expert witness work. So we'll get into like, just the standard process today. And then new approaches, and Adrienne fu che is going to go into that, again, she's the VP of cleanups here. And she's really responsible for sort of designing with us how we do that, and also taking an input from the law firms that we work with. And then we're going to talk about how to prepare for expert witness testimony. And this is really going to be where any handgun comes in. And really kind of unpack best practices there. And then maybe some new ideas that you haven't considered some new things that you might want to be looking at. And then we're going to open up, just have a panel discussion and talk about this together. I want everyone who's listening, if you have questions along the way, or ideas that you want us to explore, just pop them into the chat. And we'll handle them there. So now, so I'll just this is my only slide if you think I'm really going to talk to you. But why does this matter? Why do we Why do you care about preparing doctors will one, the best reviewers, the best witnesses are professional doctors, right? They're not professional witnesses, many of you have been in the situation where you know you're in, you're in trial and cross examination is happening from either side, and you have a professional medical witness can be really great. But if you have a really great doctor that has been prepared well, to sit in that seat, oftentimes that's what we're looking for, right? These are really practicing clinicians, they have the most up to date insights. And that's what we want to cultivate. But how do you do that at scale? Right? How do you find these doctors at scale and prepare them for this type of work? And how do you get these individuals prepared for a what is essentially a non clinical experience? Right, they're used to talking within a clinical environment, how do you prepare them for something that is more of this legal process? And you know, ultimately handle the third bullet point or did they convey to a jury that their perspective in a compelling way that's going to help not only you win the case, but you know, really help the jury understand the issues, these really complex issues that a layperson needs to be able to understand so he's going to walk us through some of that strategy as well. So with that, think our next slide Oh, I'll give a little bit on the old way versus the new way, right? So the old way, many of us are still doing this, right? With a Rolodex of doctors. And we know we're overusing some of our doctors. But we can rely on that. And we've done it for years. But  can we start to stretch outside of that, right? A lot of us are going to Google to find doctors, we're looking at expert directories, right. So we're finding that in places that you know, there are professional medical experts, and they may not be the place that we want to be looking. So the new way, the way that we adhere to the way that we really try to enable is really vetting these professionals, with  professionals understand the medical and legal industries, right, and doing that at scale, talking to 1000s of doctors instead of 10, or 20, or even 100 and filtering down to the ones that that are really usable in these types of contexts. And using technology to front end the process. How do we take a great paralegal or a great Associate Attorney and plug them into technology that lets them augment what they do what they do well, but do it at scale, being able to streamline things like searching and scheduling and contracting with doctors and make it so that more doctors want to respond to you when you outreach because of the experience that you can give them? And then ultimately training experts in a way that law firms will find the insights most helpful, right? So how do you prepare them along this journey, from case review to expert witness work to trial work that really sets them up for success. So that's what we're going to try to unpack for you guys today. That sounds good. With that, I think our next slide is actually me handing it off. So yeah, now I'm going to give it over to Adrian to talk about just the kind of the front end of the process, right, preparing for case reviews.

     

    Adrianne Fugett  11:56

    Great. Thanks, Darren. Good morning, everybody, or afternoon, if you happen to be on the East Coast. I'm going to tag on and add to what our CEO has shared, I will share with you all before I started with Jared, I was pretty good at computers. But I was really excited to see what Jared was doing. And when I fully understood this process and how much easier and quicker and more efficient, we could make these case reviews. You know, I was pretty excited to hear about it. So it's been a lot of fun and a really a true honor to work with Jared and his expertise and create this product. But I'm going to walk through obviously, many of these points are very familiar to all of you. And these are things that you likely do yourself or you expect your nurse paralegal to do. So I'm going to walk through and compare and contrast and just tell you what you know we do here at Medplace when we are matching a case to an expert for you. So one of the things that's really important to me, before I match any expert, which I'm sure you all can relate to is obviously you know, knowing the criteria, especially when we need to find an expert that is not already in our database, or our Rolodex as Jared was sharing, this is somebody that we need to, we either need to go to a Peer, peer reviewed article and search the bibliography, we've just got a really big feat ahead of us. So obviously, one of the most important things I look for here at Medplace when somebody sends a case to us is I want to know the criteria. I want to know the facts. I want to know the dates of service, I want to know the expert type, I really want to understand what we're looking at because that is something that before I even match you to an expert will help me make sure that we get the right expert. And that's what we do when we interview people as well. We find out with all of our experts. And I'll get a little bit more into that as I move in through this slide. But we really want to know what their specialties are. What do they do any extra procedures that are new and might be interesting. So that's really important for us at med plays. We want to know what what the case facts are in your case. We also before we interview anybody, myself and my team, we will check the backgrounds of any potential nurse or physician that comes to us for an interview. We will check their licensing to make sure that their license is in good standing and there are no actions against their license and we will do that before we even ask them for an interview. When we do interview them, we will ask them if they have any current or pending judgments against them. Usually I'm looking at $50,000 or more within the last 10 years. And as you guys know, that's not always easy to find. And it doesn't always mean that they're not a good expert sometimes physicians find themselves, just, they're on the long list of whoever signed the chart for a case. And so we do like to get that information upfront. And we also ask them if they've done any expert testifying work before. So we do a really thorough vetting, actually, once we get them on the call. We vet them for communication and their dispositions. So we do probably 70% or more of our interviews, all via zoom. As you guys know, it can be a real challenge, sometimes getting a physician or even a nurse on the phone. But we really do encourage that before we even have them interview for our platform, what we look for on a zoom call is their disposition, how will they communicate? Would they make a good testifying expert? Are they interested in testifying Why or why not a lot of times, as you guys know, you find that there could be an excellent expert that you come across and Amy, we'll get more into this, but they've got all of the great information, they're supportive of your care, but they're not necessarily going to make a good testifying expert. So we work really hard with our experts, as we're interviewing them and training them and, and getting them ready to even be on our platform, we go over the standard of care, making sure they understand that, when you look at these cases, and when you work with attorneys, really be thinking about the standard of care in this particular patients in physicians setting. So were they in a level one trauma center, or were they not what kind of access to resources did they have, because what we don't want to do is I know myself as a nurse, and I know working in a trauma center that sometimes you would find yourself practicing above and beyond the standard of care, because you're you're afraid of lawsuits. And when you do that you kind of raise the bar, you raise the standard of care, not knowingly or not intentionally, I should say. So we want to make sure when we're talking to experts that they really understand the setting, and that they're really empathetic and compassionate to everybody involved, so that they can really speak to the standard of care, and that we also explain to them causation. So we do a pretty thorough interview process before they even get on boarded. And then we have denied experts before for obviously a myriad of reasons that they have actions, or they're not in good standing with their license, or they've had multiple lawsuits at a high dollar value, of course, they won't even make it to the interview. And then if they're if they don't perform well in their zoom interview, so that's something that when I was working in the law firms that I didn't always have time to do when I you know, when I found the expert that I wanted by going through the bibliography and reaching out and getting a hold of set expert being really excited about it, I didn't always have the time to do all of these vetting. So it's, it's pretty, it's a good feeling that the experts that I know we've got on our platform who have gone through this fairly thorough, rigorous process. And then our experts here at Medplace, we do give them a document that I created, it's pretty straightforward. It's something any of us can do. It's just things to understand what attorneys are looking for what claims consultants with insurance companies, what are they looking for, when you get on a call, or when you talk to them about a case really guiding them especially because as Jared said, our experts are not professional experts. They're professional physicians right there. They come to Medplace because they're excited about this line of work and they want to learn about it. So we do give them a document as well after the interview that kind of gives them some pointers to keep in keep in mind as they're chatting through these case reviews. We also have videos where we have done kind of a inside view of what it looks like on a claims call. So that's something that we share with our experts so they can see an expert being on a call with a claims consultant and kind of how to guide that call so they understand what comes across. Another thing I will throw in here too. That's also really helpful at the top point there knowing your criteria, the questions that you as well as your case description, but questions that you have Have for your expert are also really helpful for me when you load a case onto our platform. And that's also helpful for the expert, right? Because you don't want them going through 1000s and 1000s of pages, that will be very expensive to you. So that's kind of something as we talk about best practices that we really want them to be able to focus on what are the relevant points of this case? And exposing vulnerabilities we tell our experts that be prepared and understand that, what will the plaintiff be looking at as a vulnerability in this case? And why and why is it not really a vulnerability or is it and steer away from it, and Amy, we'll get into that as well. And then I also explained to our physicians and nurses to really be able to give you this information in a format that's digestible for a jury. And for a layperson, we really encourage them to understand that when they're talking to attorneys, and when they're talking to claims consultants that, although they're all really very well seasoned in what they do, they might not always know all of the lingo in the medical terms. And so we really do encourage them to make sure that they're using that opportunity as they're doing these first initial reviews to be really clear, and really careful that they're explaining what is happening, what happened in this case, what the outcomes were, and do it in a way that's digestible to a jury and to a layperson. And so I've got one more slide and then I'm going to turn it over to Amy. So next slide Nestor. So, I've kind of hit on some of these points a little bit. But one of the really cool things, like I said, when I got to work with Jared, and we created this platform is I get case requests every day. And it can be for any myriad of experts, pediatric neurosurgeon, and that was always interesting, that was not an easy, easy find, as you guys can imagine. But what we do here at Medplace is we allow you to not overuse the same experts. And we will give you that turnaround to pick from about three experts within 24 hours or less. And again, we talked about how you don't necessarily have to go through the bibliography yourself. We've done that here at Med play, so you don't have those cold resort outreaches, to find experts. And then again, that fast matching, that's something that you know, working in a busy law firm, when I was in Texas in Louisiana, that having three or more well vetted experts to pick from in less than 24 hours was pretty, pretty exciting. And then the other thing, getting records to your clients. So with our platform, what's really unique about this is you cut down on a lot of time with the paralegals in your law firm. And you know, they can be doing other duties that you need them to do. So on our platform, they are experts, they access the records right from the platform, they're not able to download them that protects HIPAA that protects you that protects your client. So they have complete access to everything they need, including imaging on their platform. Also here at Medplace, let's say you've got 10,000 pages of records. And you don't necessarily want to spend the time because you've got to get this reviewed quickly. You don't want to spend all the time, you know going through those records. As I mentioned in the first slide, as long as we have a good description the case description, what type of expert you're looking for, and the questions for the expert, our team can narrow 10,000 pages down to about 650 pages of relevant records tabbed and organized in a PDF that can allow the expert to focus on what you need them to focus on, especially on that first view that first look like what's going on in this case, are there damages are there not damages, so you're not sending secure links to drop boxes, you're not having to prepare paper records, some experts that I've worked with still want paper records and giant binders and, and you're worried about sending them to their home and you know if someone's going to come steal this box thinking score, it's a it's a great precedent and it really ends up being you know, a giant box of HIPAA violation. So that is something that's really unique about our platform, and I do oversee that. I do have a team that does that and organizes that and that is overseen by me. I organize those records Here's how I was taught by attorneys in the law firms that I worked in the schooling that I had. So it's, it's pretty exciting. And then again, like I said, the record ordering and organization. And so now you've got this really robust way of getting experts that you need really quickly, especially if you're in a crunch, and you get your review. And let's say that you really like this expert that you're doing the review with, and you want to hire them. So the next step is getting them properly prepared to be able to be a testifying expert. What I shared with you that little bit that I do, that's a little tiny snapshot in time, right? But it doesn't, it's not really enough to make sure that they're going to be a good testifying expert. So that's where Amy comes in. And she can talk about what she does. And she's gotten a huge assignment of really teaching all of us what's really valuable about teaching experts remembering to not come across arrogant, right? Because they have all of this knowledge and information and how can they present that in a way that that doesn't come across as putting off the jury. And using good visuals, because all of us even this slide presentation, it's much better and easier to talk about our points if we've got really good visuals. And so I'm really excited to turn it over to Amy and Amy.

     

    Amy Hanegan  26:30

    Thank you, Adrian. Good morning, everyone, or good afternoon on the East Coast. I'm going to focus on two things today. First of all, what do jurors expect of expert witnesses. And I have worked with numerous experts over the years in preparing them to testify effectively. And I hope to provide you with some tools that you can use immediately when working with the experts things that you may not have done in the past. And I'd certainly like him when we start to have our panel discussion to hear your ideas. So what did yours expect? Well, first of all, when you say the word expert jurors expect that they expect that the expert witness will be the best in his or her field, they are expecting that they will be able to explain the subject matter so they can understand it that is a given. And they really want to make sure that for them for a juror to do his or her job, that they are addressing the allegations in the case directly. And they like to hear the support to support and defend their position with facts not going off into the weeds, but really supporting what they feel happened. What happened, how it happened, what should have happened if it didn't happen. And they are hoping that the expert will be an excellent teacher because they realize that they aren't medical experts. All they have is their experience their own medical experiences, working with doctors going to the doctor going to the hospital being in an emergency room, being diagnosed, having relatives that were diagnosed, and so they really need the expert to be an excellent teacher. And that's something you want to start looking for immediately. When you are working with your experts. They're really hoping that the expert will provide them with the information they need to make an informed decision that they will have information when they are deliberating that they can use that they can actually repeat during deliberations. And they also want to see someone they want to see an expert witness who can really relate to them as patients or their loved ones. Not being professorial, I guess is the easiest way to say it. Can I have the next slide Nestor? Nestor Can I have There we go. Thank you. Yeah, next slide. Great. So I think we really want to remember a couple things here that when you're choosing an expert, what is the case require? Is this going to be a battle of the experts you know, very commonly, we realized quite quickly that this is not going to really be about The defendant, this case is going to be a battle of the experts. And that is something that you should be determining. And I'm sure you are early in your evaluation of the case. There may be devastating outcome, but was the standard of care appropriate. And this is what we'll want to make sure that the expert is willing is ready to address. We talked to Adrian, talk to you about the common vetting processes that met place uses. And really getting back to what do you need from this experts? So can we go to the Can we go to the next slide, please? All right. Now, one of the things that I have found this very helpful, is it certainly during my witness preparation sessions with experts is I find that there's a lot they want to tell the jury. But what you need to focus his focus on pardon me, is what they need to tell the jury. Are they clear on the allegations that they are addressing? It's amazing to me how they can just go off and onto tangents. And I'm like, Whoa, how does that relate to the allegation, and when you keep bringing them back to what the allegation is that they're addressing, it's very helpful to them. And it keeps them in what I like a concept that I use with all my witnesses, whether they're defendants or experts, is what is their piece of the pie. So sometimes expert witnesses feel that they have a much bigger piece of the pie than they do. And it's your job as attorneys and even claim representatives, that they are clear as to what they are being hired for and what they're not being hired for. And this will help streamline and create effective testimony, once they understand what their piece of the pie is, and the allegations to which they are referring. Next slide, please. All right. So when we get into specifics of working with experts, I find that the one thing that I need to hear over and over are the development of themes, or what we'll call reiterative statements that the jury can repeat. And sometimes I have actually pulled out or asked the attorney, not me, but I've asked the attorneys to pull out the verdict form. And let's look at the verdict form and which questions are they addressing? They may not be addressing liability, but only causation. And if that's the case, then we need to get them focused more on that. And what I really find important is to make sure that they are creating themes with you with your help, that the jurors can repeat that they can quote those experts I give you on the within the purple box here I've created two examples. There was no delay in Mr Jones's cancer diagnosis. If that should it be a failure to diagnose? Or something a little more complicated. The placental pathology proves that the baby was damaged three months before birth. Some of you may know Rebecca Barragan. I worked on a case with her as an expert. She is the placental pathology expert. And we just had to get her to be able to definitively say this, though her slides were illustrative we had to work on getting them so a jury could understand them. Can we go to the next slide, please? Okay, now, I am an huge proponent of the expert witness working directly with a visual strategist. I work personally with Diane Meyer of legal presentations. I'm happy to provide her information to you. And what I have found is that a lot of and you've seen this too, a lot of experts think that if they just use the medical chart, or they have some kind of visuals that they've prepared that they will be effective for a jury. Sometimes they have prepared those visuals for their peers. A jury isn't going to understand those. So I think it's absolutely critically important. I cannot stress this enough that your expert will and you work with A visual strategist, someone who really knows medical malpractice and knows how to create graphics that will help really allow the jury to understand what is happening. Visuals should be simple and persuasive. At the same time, it should be absolutely clear what we're trying to show, if they're in terms of timelines, how things were happening over time. Rather than showing pages and pages and pages of medical records a visual strategist can help you create a timeline that will be very illustrative of what you need. And not only should the visuals be used, they should be used throughout an expert's testimony, both text and graphically, but you'll want to be using those same graphics within with throughout the whole trial so that the jury is seeing things repetitively. Next slide, please. Okay, so here are some tips that help expert witnesses do a much more effective job when they're testifying. First of all, you need to make sure you let the experts know who ended up on the jury. They may be thinking they have a much higher level of education than is actually than those who actually have appearing cut for jury duty. And certainly, something that I find is often left out, is to make sure the expert witness knows what is the jury heard so far? What are you What are you feeling the jury is getting and what do you need, the expert to make sure is emphasized during his or her testimony. And I find in continuing with this, that they need to be using terms like what is most important, what we need to focus on here, actually having the jury hear those words now in some venues. And I'm not sure in your venue but in venues elsewhere, jurors are allowed to take notes. So when an expert witness says what is most important, that really helps in terms of the jury writing that down and taking that into deliberations. Also, you would be emphasizing that throughout your opening statement, your closing argument and with the your defendant. Also, there is no substitute for practicing direct and cross even with an expert. You know, just because an expert witness pardon me, just because an expert witness has a tremendous resume, and has a phenomenal set of accolades after their name, that does not make them a good witness that there is no substitute for you actually practicing direct and cross examination. And you need to set up those  times with them when you will be reviewing that and preparing them for what they can expect to hear on cross examination. Especially when if you're working with newer experts, who are very well trained, very well vetted, certainly bioMedplace or else and they really want to do a good job. So you got to help them do a good job. And the best way to help them do a good job is to review their testimony with them not talking about it. Please don't interpret, practicing direct and cross as talking about it, you need to hear them actually testifying in a practice session. Now for you, I just want to make sure that you understand that repetition is the best tool in the courtroom. You can repeat themes that that you have created for your expert witnesses throughout the trial. The jury should be hearing these in opening statement it throughout testimony and certainly in closing. And I will say that most experts really do want to do a good job but they are so easily find themselves in the weeds and the jury gets bored and they are they're not following. They talk they tune out. And what we want to do is keep them tuned in by having effective dynamic testimony. Now I didn't get into all the today all the delivery aspects that need to be addressed. And certainly, I'd be happy to do that with you. But these are the some general ideas of working with experts. And I hope that is helpful. And we're going to open this up to certainly open it up to questions.

     

    Nestor Carrillo  40:22

    Thanks, enemy. We have some questions here, ready for the panel. But again, if you have any questions, feel free to drop them in the chat. And we'll start working through those. All right. First up, so this could go for either Adrian or for Amy. What are some of the most important qualifications when you're interviewing a doctor or nurse for either review, or expert witness testimony work?

     

    Amy Hanegan  40:58

    Well, Adrian, Adrian should approach that first. Yeah,

     

    Adrianne Fugett  41:01

    I mean, I probably have some and then Amy, you probably have some stuff to add. So some of the most important things we look for is your years of experience we want to make sure that you've got for nurses, at least five years, as you guys know, the burnout rate for nurses is seeming to be a little bit quicker nowadays. But for physicians, we look for physicians that are board certified, and that have been practicing in their area of expertise for 10 years. And then of course, some of the other items that I covered in my presentation about any judgments is their license in good standing, that sort of thing. So those are things that I look for whether I'm working in a law firm, or here at Medplace, and then Amy, I'm sure you take that even a step beyond what you're looking for what you're trying to develop within a potential expert.

     

    Amy Hanegan  41:55

    Well, I'm going to get the expert when they're already hired, and they're on board and they're ready to testify. And so I'm looking for their communication skills, how effectively they are communicating themes. And very often I just have to get them focused on themes. But what happens first is usually I look at the visuals that have been prepared. And I'll say, Ooh, we need to get you something that will support you more effectively when you're testifying, because what you're trying to say is not clearly visualized. You know, one of the things I want to tell everybody is that the research shows that people spend more than 11 hours in front of a screen, the average number of hours spent per person. So people expect visuals, they expect to see really dynamic visuals. And if the expert does not have those, you're really taking a chance that the jury will not be getting what they need to make the decision in your favor. Yeah. Yeah, I mean, we're

     

    Jerrod Bailey  43:04

    any litigants on this call know that they're there. There's essentially storytellers right through their founding their story of data on persuasive arguments, but they're creating an arc for the jury to follow. And, and visuals are just a just such a core part of storytelling. It's, it's really great. I love that you incorporate those in.

     

    Nestor Carrillo  43:28

    Okay. Here's another question. How important is ongoing training for reviewers and expert witnesses? And why is it important? I think Amy,

     

    Adrianne Fugett  43:45

    I mean, that's kind of what you do as you're getting the expert ready, right, constantly reinforcing what, what they know how they're going to present it?

     

    Amy Hanegan  43:55

    Yeah. The first thing comes to mind is that each case is different. And may though they may have testified in the past, the case that they're, you're asking them to testify about their role may be slightly different. They may need a refresher on reminding them about the jurors. We are gearing things to a seventh grader jurist, here's a little trick jurors don't mind hearing what they already know. It makes them feel smart. So we get it, you know that they have to bring it back down. They're not talking to their colleagues. I'm not sure that actually dresses the actual question. I'm not sure I'm sure. But in terms of practicing and reviewing every time they testify, if you're hiring them, if you're working, you need to have a practice session with them for sure. Yeah, that's great.

     

    Nestor Carrillo  44:51

    Another question here. Why should law firms consider a new approach for these reviews and expert witness testimony we talked to up to standard approach, why should they consider the new approach?

     

    Adrianne Fugett  45:04

    Yeah, I mean, both Jared. And I probably can speak to that Jared. Right. I mean, I think what Jared and I have seen here at Medplace. And what we've heard from our clients is, the turnaround time for getting an expert and getting a case reviewed, depending on your schedule, as the attorney can be as quick as three days or three weeks, and you've got the completed review done. And that's, and then again, as both Jared and I touched on, you're not reusing the same expert. So you're not creating kind of a built in bias, by using your same experts that have served you well, but you're exploring your options. I don't know what else you probably have more to add to that, Jared.

     

    Jerrod Bailey  45:44

    Yeah, I wonder I wasn't planning on doing this. But I wanted to show you something I wanted to show you the kind of experience we create for doctors and just kind of let you let some of you imagine, what if we were providing this experience to our doctors? Do you think I could do that really quick, you guys, he goes up for an impromptu, visual. So Netflix has a platform like Uber, where our doctors are essentially our drivers, right? But imagine if you, you can use our platform for your own experts. And as you're doing your own recruiting, imagine you went to an expert and said because remember what's happening with them, you go to somebody who's a practicing physician. And if you've ever heard this, like, you know what, I did a case for somebody before, and it was really clunky. And it took me six months to get paid on it. And, and they sent me a banker's box of documents. And you know, I'm busy, I'm in the clinic, I'm practicing surgery every day. For us, we go to a doctor and say, hey, look, we'll create a login for you, it will take about 10 minutes to fill in, fill out your onboarding paperwork, which is their top tax documents how they want to get paid. And then we give them this dashboard, where they get to see what you know what they've done on the platform they get, they've just got a new request, it's can be across that's coming from you, gives them some basics on it's got some medical records, shows them what they're going to earn, they can just accept it, they get a ping right on their phone. So you have a lot more access to these doctors. And then once they have it open, look, I'm looking at the tabbed organized record and I can peruse all of this in my browser, I can look at all of my imaging files, I can chat with you and ask you questions, I can send you my availability for the deposition or for the case review that we're going to do. It's just really, really simple. And that's why we're able to we have such a high conversion rate with doctors practicing physicians, because we use technology designed for them to make it really easy. So imagine your offer is you're going out and finding more doctors and leveraging our platform to find even more, imagine that you have this kind of technology front end to your process, it's a really big differentiator in your conversion rate of being successful, of getting those experts to actually agree to do work with you is it's way different than what you're probably used to. So hopefully that gives you a little bit of illustration around that. But if you don't, whether you use Medplace or not like figure out how to create a good experience for your doctors. And technology really is the amplifier for that. So whether using Box and Ambra, and all these other tools and zoom, figure out how you're going to use those and integrate those into a really seamless experience because you'll find your conversion rate to actually be successful with doctors, getting them more willing and onboard to continue work for you again, it's just very, very high. That's great. Thank you, Jared.

     

    Nestor Carrillo  48:41

    Here's a question that can go to both Adrian and Amy. How do you tell an expert they need to work on either their review or their presentation for expert witness testimony? It's a difficult conversation. How do you approach that?

     

    Amy Hanegan  49:03

    In you want to go for okay, I'm happy to address that. So this can be difficult, where you are very impressed with your witness you like you like all the papers they've written you like that they are just so well renowned. And you really think they're going to be great. And then the more you talk to them, you're a little concerned that their testimony is going to not is really not going to fly. Now we've been talking, I've been talking I should say in this webinar about preparing people for trial. We're in front of jurors, but then of course there's the preparation for deposition. And that's where you can really start making headway. Really start working on those themes. I mean, you want to make sure that that expert is relaying the information you need to that is very persuasive to the opposing counsel. And in doing so, you can take that opportunity to review that testimony. And just work as a team just take a team approach, that you're working as a team, you want to make sure that you're hearing the answers that the expert witness will be providing in a deposition or trial, you want to hear them and you want to make sure that they are aligned with your entire approach to the case. So I think it's right it starts right from the beginning, as soon as you start talking about preparing for deposition. And you can say, I'm going to want a practice session, I want to review and do a mock deposition with them, making sure that they hear the questions that you feel are most of called and will most likely be asked of them. Because you don't want to pick up their deposition. You don't want to get into that deposition. And you're hearing paragraph after paragraph of an answer when you need it to hear a definitive and decisive statement. And teaching them the ins and outs of waiting for opposing counsel to ask the follow up question. If they don't ask they don't get.

     

    Nestor Carrillo  51:26

    That's what I would say. That's great. Another question. Again, I think, either to Adrian or Amy, can you share an experience where an expert either failed to meet or exceeded expectations? Question?

     

    Adrianne Fugett  51:43

    Yeah, that's a good question. I think Amy, probably you have a lot more stories in that arena. So go for it.

     

    Amy Hanegan  51:51

    Oh, dear. Well, one thing I know they really one thing they really like jurors really liked to hear. And I remember this is I always have an attorney include a question as to why did you become a placental pathologist? Why did you become a cardiac surgeon? Why did you become they just love jurors just love to hear the background. And we had a situation, very difficult case, very sad, very bad damages damaged. up, baby. And this O V, was the expert was so compassionate, and talked about how even in medical school when he would see started to see babies who were damaged, he talked about how that affected him. And how he knew. As soon as he put his hand, I remember him saying this. As soon as he put his hand on that damaged child, he knew he had to help. It was moving, I can tell you so that personal experience is so critically important with an expert, don't let them just I know, we're very focused on the allegations, as I have said, but we can't forget that these doctors, these experts must relate to those who are listening to them. Now, that's not going to come through in deposition. Understand that, obviously, but once you get them in front of a jury, and you're preparing, make sure that you're asking them for a personal experience as to why they chose the field that they're in and include that in the direct exam.

     

    Nestor Carrillo  53:40

    Yeah. Fantastic. Last, last point, Jared and Amy out first with Jared, I think we can wrap on this What's How can law firms or any organization partner with that place? Amy, same question to you after Jared, how can law firms partner with better witnesses, even in combination with that place.

     

    Jerrod Bailey  54:07

    So I'll start so my place is really easy to work with. If you've got a case you've got a specialist you're looking for, you can literally get a logon created for free in a day and you can be looking at CVS by the next morning. You really only pay for anything once you finally commit to the doctor that you pick. And we are nationwide we service all 50 states we've got hundreds of physicians around the country of every specialty you've ever heard of even hard to find ones and we do have a pretty effective recruiting engine whenever there's one that we don't already have. So that's fairly easy to work with. Now you can also work this programmatically, you can like being able to do lots of things all year long.

In this presentation, a panel of legal, medical, and technology experts discuss the current state of case reviews and expert witness testimony and what firms and organizations should consider when training their experts. The panel will uncover new approaches and practical advice you can implement today.
Amy Hanegan

Guest - Amy Hanegan

President at Better Witnesses Trial Consulting Services

Amy B. Hanegan has been a communication consultant since 1976. As president of her own communications training firm in New York City, she provided training programs which rendered techniques for enhancing public speaking skills, corporate presentations and selling skills. Now, she leads Better Witnesses, Inc., which today is named Better Witnesses Trial Consulting Services, a full service litigation consulting firm.

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