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LITIGATION DEPARTMENT OF THE YEAR - Mid-Size Firm  ALM's Daily Report  

Layers of Legal Protections for Peer Review Committees

Hospital Peer Review

In an article published by Hospital Peer Review, Partner Carol Michel is quoted discussing legal protections for peer review committees. 

While many physicians and nurses are often hesitant to serve on peer review committees for fear of legal liability for their honest assessments, these concerns can be mitigated by the multiple layers of protection that exist for these committees. Additionally, federal and state laws provide protections for peer review participants. While on the federal level, the Healthcare Quality Improvement Act offers immunity, state laws vary widely. 

"They want to promote this type of peer review and allow candid discussions about the performance and quality of care provide by physicians, without the fear of subjecting themselves to liability," she says. 

Michel further explains the foundation of these liability protections, which assume that peer review participants are not participating for malicious reasons. 

"Provided they are coming into the process for the right reason, which is to improve the services provided to patients at the facility, I do believe the protections are there and they can do so without unreasonable fear for facing potential liability," she says. "If you enter into this process for the wrong reasons, then that may not hold up."

For the full article, click here.

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