Policyholder Services

Am I covered by OMIC for performing preoperative histories and physical exams (H&Ps) for my surgical patients?

As an activity within the ordinary and customary scope of practice of an ophthalmologist, performing preoperative histories and physical examinations is a service that OMIC covers. Professional judgment is needed, however, in deciding when to consult with other physicians or refer the patient to a primary care provider. Many patients contemplating eye surgery also have medical conditions that could increase the risk of the operative or diagnostic procedure and anesthesia/sedation. While ophthalmologists are medical doctors, as specialists they generally limit their care and treatment to ophthalmic conditions. Accordingly, some ophthalmologists choose to refer all surgical patients to the primary care physician for assessment of the patient’s perioperative risk. Others, however,  have kept their H&P skills up-to-date and feel competent in performing these evaluations, making referrals only when the ophthalmologist determines that the patient’s medical regimen may need to be changed.

For risk management advice and information regarding preoperative histories and physicals, please see the following OMIC articles:

Lawsuits Related to Preoperative Evaluations

Preoperative History and Physical Examinations

Preoperative Testing and Examination

Who Can Perform Preop History and Physical Exams?


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