IT'S ALL FREE! Flag and Tag

No, it's not a kid's game or anything to do with sports or patriotism. Flag and tag is my term to refer to the way that independent and in-house legal nurse consultants can alert attorneys to specific chart entries.

When a treating physician, nurse or other healthcare provider  is scheduled for deposition (at which time they're called a deponent), both the plaintiff and defense attorneys will review the deponent's chart entries before and during the deposition. That's where flagging and tagging come in for the LNC.

Flagging refers to identification of all the documentation entries of the deponent in the medical records.  Nurse deponents are usually in just one set of records, such as those from a hospital or nursing home. Physician deponents, on the other hand, may have documentation in their own office records as well as hospital, home health, nursing home and other types of records. If that's the case, each set of medical records is flagged.

The LNC can highlight the date of the entry and the deponent's signature and then place a colored flag on that page of the chart. If more than one deponent has entries in the same chart, I use a different colored flag for each deponent.  That means that I use red flags for Nurse A, blue flags for Nurse B, etc.  I use sticky document flags manufactured by Post-It.

The second part of Flag and Tag is tagging. Tagging refers to labeling your medical chronology so that it corresponds to the flags in the medical chronologies. There are several ways that the LNC can tag medical records. A flag in the same color that was used in the medical records can be used on corresponding pages of the medical chronology. In the photo below, Dr. Lonnie Cray's name was emphasized with a highlighter and yellow flags were used to tag the chronology. Although it's not shown, yellow flags were used for Dr. Cray's entries in the medical records as well.

The first example shows electronic red tags in the left column for Dr. Cray in a chronology created using CaseMap software.

The next image shows a medical chronology that was created in Microsoft Word. All instances of Dr. Cray's name were identified and a check mark symbol was inserted to tag his name. In addition, his name was electronically highlighted.


Although not shown on the electronically tagged examples, I usually use a flag on the highlighted pages in the chronology as well.  That way, the attorney can flip to the flagged pages or read through the entire chronology, whichever the attorney prefers.

...Katy Jones