What Risk Managers Need to Know about Plaintiffs' Reptile Strategy

Enrollment Information:
This enrollment will expire September 30, 2019.
You must complete all course requirements (including claiming CEs) and save/print the completion certificate by September 30, 2019.


Hospital personnel, managing officers, staff physicians and administrative personnel are frequently subpoenaed to give deposition testimony, both in cases where the institution is a party and in those where it is not yet involved. By this point in time, most healthcare risk managers have likely heard of the "Reptile" approach to depositions and litigation being employed by plaintiff attorneys nationwide. But risk managers need to know how to help prepare hospital personnel to face this tactic. Simply meeting once with the hospital's attorneys for routine depo prep is not enough. Risk managers need to understand the tactics and should become an active participant in this preparation, with the realization that this approach will be used frequently in coming years. A simple slip by a hospital employee in a deposition in which the "Reptile" approach is used is enough to cost the hospital or healthcare organization millions of dollars in damages.


Learning Objectives:
By the end of this self-study you should be able to:

  1. Discuss the plaintiffs' "Reptile" tactic to litigation
  2. Identify healthcare organization personnel who may be vulnerable to Reptile attacks
  3. State how healthcare witnesses can prepare to face Reptile tactics in depositions


Level of Learning:


Domain of Practice:
Claims & Litigation


J. Thaddeus Eckenrode


Criteria for Successful Completion:
To receive continuing nursing education contact hours, participants must achieve 80% on the post-test and complete an evaluation at its conclusion.


Continuing Education:
This program is approved contact hours toward the fulfillment of the requirements of ASHRM designations of FASHRM (Fellow) and DFASHRM (Distinguished Fellow) and toward CPHRM (Certified Professional in Healthcare Risk Management) renewal. CE credit may be used toward CPHRM renewal only by those holding the credential at the time of the program.

American Society for Healthcare Risk Management is accredited as a provider of continuing nursing education by the American Nurses Credentialing Center's Commission on Accreditation.

Contact Hours: 1.0 hour
Passing Score: 80%


Conflict of Interest Statement:
As required by the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Commission on Accreditation, we would like to make you aware of all potential conflicts of interest.

This educational activity’s planners and presenters have indicated that they have no bias or conflict of interest.


Commercial Support:
There is no sponsorship for this event.


Date Published:  March 2017
Date to be Reviewed:  Q1 2020
Date of Contact Hour Expiration:  Q4 2019

Credit Information

Activity Number Credit Amount Accreditation Period
ASHRM & ANCC 1 hour January 01, 2019 - December 31, 2019