State Codes and Statutes

State Codes and Statutes

Statutes > North-carolina > Chapter_131E > GS_131E-95

Part 5. Medical Review Committee.

§ 131E‑95.  Medicalreview committee.

(a)        A member of a dulyappointed medical review committee who acts without malice or fraud shall notbe subject to liability for damages in any civil action on account of any act,statement or proceeding undertaken, made, or performed within the scope of thefunctions of the committee.

(b)        The proceedings ofa medical review committee, the records and materials it produces and thematerials it considers shall be confidential and not considered public recordswithin the meaning of G.S. 132‑1, " 'Public records' defined",and shall not be subject to discovery or introduction into evidence in anycivil action against a hospital, an ambulatory surgical facility licensed underChapter 131E of the General Statutes, or a provider of professional healthservices which results from matters which are the subject of evaluation andreview by the committee. No person who was in attendance at a meeting of thecommittee shall be required to testify in any civil action as to any evidenceor other matters produced or presented during the proceedings of the committeeor as to any findings, recommendations, evaluations, opinions, or other actionsof the committee or its members. However, information, documents, or recordsotherwise available are not immune from discovery or use in a civil actionmerely because they were presented during proceedings of the committee.Documents otherwise available as public records within the meaning of G.S. 132‑1do not lose their status as public records merely because they were presentedor considered during proceedings of the committee. A member of the committee ora person who testifies before the committee may testify in a civil action butcannot be asked about the person's testimony before the committee or anyopinions formed as a result of the committee hearings.

(c)        Information that isconfidential and is not subject to discovery or use in civil actions under thissection may be released to a professional standards review organization thatperforms any accreditation or certification including the Joint Commission onAccreditation of Healthcare Organizations, or to a patient safety organizationor its designated contractors. Information released under this subsection shallbe limited to that which is reasonably necessary and relevant to the standardsreview organization's determination to grant or continue accreditation orcertification, or the patient safety organization's or its contractors'analysis of patient safety and health care quality. Information released underthis subsection retains its confidentiality and is not subject to discovery oruse in any civil actions as provided under this section, and the standardsreview or patient safety organization shall keep the information confidentialsubject to this section, except as necessary to carry out the organization'spatient safety, accreditation, or certification activities. For the purposes ofthis section, "patient safety organization" means an entity thatcollects and analyzes patient safety or health care quality data of providersfor the purpose of improving patient safety and the quality of health caredelivery and includes, but is not limited to, an entity formed pursuant toPublic Law No. 109‑41. (1973, c. 1111; 1981, c. 725; 1983, c. 775, s. 1; 1999‑222,s. 2; 2002‑179, s. 19; 2004‑149, s. 2.5; 2006‑144, s. 3.2.)