Marshall occupational medicine expert pens new book to guide start-up practices

Mohammed Ranavaya, M.D., J.D., a board-certified specialist in occupational medicine and professor in the department of family and community health at the Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine, has written a new book that serves as a practical guide for physicians intending to begin and grow a medicolegal practice, including independent medical examinations (IME) and expert witness and forensic opinion work.

In the “Physician’s Guide to Medicolegal Practice” (American Medical Association, 2019) published earlier this month, Ranavaya covers broad topics from all aspects of medicolegal practice including performing IMEs, writing record and file review opinions, handling expert witness opportunities and dealing with personal injury claims, court systems and legal professionals ethically and professionally.

The book discusses the art of medicolegal report writing and scientific causation analysis, which are essential components of a successful practice for any medical or scientific disciplines in which IME and expert witness opinions are needed by workers’ compensation systems, casualty insurers claimants, treating physicians and attorneys. The second half of the book discusses deposition and courtroom testimony skills any independent medical examiner/expert witness needs, and warns of common challenges and pitfalls encountered when dealing with the legal system, including other issues arising out of IME and expert witness practice, and recommends preventive strategies. Finally, a robust appendix provides sample forms and templates to help others get started.

“In this book, my goal was to bridge the gap between reading about the IME business and actually carrying out the work,” said Ranavaya, who also serves as president of the American Board of Independent Medical Examiners and director of the Appalachian Institute of Occupational & Environmental Medicine.

This book is an easy read with thorough definitions of common medical and legal terms and chapter summaries.