Mississippi Peer Review Statute

The information on this page was last updated by Horty, Springer & Mattern on March 20, 2019.

MISSISSIPPI

PEER REVIEW

Miss. Code Ann. §41-63-1 Definitions.

(1) The terms “medical or dental review committee” or “committee,” when used in this chapter, shall mean a committee of a state or local professional medical, nursing, pharmacy or dental society or a licensed hospital, nursing home or other health care facility, or of a medical, nursing, pharmacy or dental staff or a licensed hospital, nursing home or other health care facility or of a medical care foundation or health maintenance organization, preferred provider organization, individual practice association, any ambulance service or other prehospital emergency response agency, or any trauma improvement committee established at a licensed hospital designated as a trauma care facility by the Mississippi State Department of Health, Emergency Medical Services program, or any regional or state committee designated by the Mississippi State Department of Health, Emergency Medical Services program, and which participates in the trauma care system, or similar entity, the function of which, or one (1) of the functions of which, is to evaluate and improve the quality of health care rendered by providers of health care service, to evaluate the competence or practice of physicians or other health care practitioners, or to determine that health care services rendered were professionally indicated or were performed in compliance with the applicable standard of care or that the cost of health care rendered was considered reasonable by the providers of professional health care services in the area and includes a committee functioning as a utilization review committee, a utilization or quality control peer review organization, or a similar committee or a committee of similar purpose, and the governing body of any licensed hospital while considering a recommendation or decision concerning a physician’s competence, conduct, staff membership or clinical privileges.

(2) The term “proceedings” means all reviews, meetings, conversations, and communications of any medical or dental review committee.

(3) The term “records” shall mean any and all committee minutes, transcripts, applications, correspondence, incident reports, and other documents created, received or reviewed by or for any medical or dental review committee.

§41-63-3 Providing medical and dental information.

(1) Any hospital, medical staff, state or local professional medical, pharmacy or dental society, nursing home, health maintenance organization, medical care foundation, preferred provider organization or other health care facility is authorized to establish medical or dental review committees one of the purposes of which may be to evaluate or review the diagnosis or treatment or the performance or rendition of medical or hospital services, to evaluate or improve the quality of health care rendered by providers of health care service, to determine that health care services rendered were professionally indicated or were performed in compliance with the applicable standard of care or that the cost of health care rendered was considered reasonable under the circumstances.

(2) Any person, professional group, hospital, sanatorium, extended care facility, skilled nursing home, intermediate care facility or other health care facility or organization may provide medical or dental information, reports or other data relating to the condition and treatment of any person to the Mississippi Hospital Association, Mississippi State Medical Association, Mississippi Medical and Surgical Association, Mississippi Dental Association, Mississippi State Pharmaceutical Association, Division of Medicaid, any allied medical or dental organization or any duly authorized medical or dental review committee, to be used in the evaluation and improvement of the quality and efficiency of medical or dental care provided in such medical, dental or health care facility, including care rendered at the private office of a physician or dentist. Such data and records shall not divulge the identity of any patient.

§41-63-5 Immunity for furnishing information.

No physician, dentist, pharmacist, nurse, hospital, organization or institution furnishing information, data, reports or records under Section 41-63-3 or 41-63-4 [health data registry] shall, by reason of furnishing such information be liable in damages to any person. No hospital, hospital governing body, medical or dental review committee, or member of such a committee or governing body, or employee thereof, shall be liable in damages to any person for any action taken or recommendation made within the scope of the functions of any medical or dental review committee if such committee or committee member acts without malice and in the reasonable belief that such action or recommendation is warranted by the facts known to him at the time of such action or recommendation.

§41-63-9 Confidentiality of review committee proceedings.

(1) Notwithstanding any conflicting statute, court rule or other law in order to encourage medical and dental review activity, the proceedings and records of any medical or dental review committee shall be confidential and shall not be subject to discovery or introduction into evidence in any civil action arising out of the matters which are the subject of evaluation and review by such committee. No person who was in attendance at a meeting of such committee shall be permitted or required to testify in any civil action regarding any evidence or other matters produced or presented during the proceedings of the committee or as to any findings, recommendations, evaluations, opinions or other actions of the committee or its members. However, information, documents or records otherwise discoverable or admissible from original sources are not to be construed as immune from discovery or use in any civil action merely because they were presented during the proceedings of such committee, nor should any person who testifies before such committee or who is a member of such committee be prevented from testifying as to other matters within his knowledge. Provided, however, a witness shall not be questioned concerning his participation on or testimony before such committee or opinions formed by him as a result of such committee hearings or proceedings.

(2) The provisions of subsection (1) of this section which limit the discovery of medical or dental review committee records and proceedings shall not apply in any legal action brought by a medical or dental review committee to restrict or revoke a physician’s license to practice medicine or hospital staff privileges, or in any legal action brought by an aggrieved physician against any member of the committee or the legal entity which formed such committee for actions alleged to have been malicious.

(3) The provisions of this statute, including the confidentiality provided in this subsection, shall be deemed part of the substantive law of this state enacted for the expressed legislative purpose of promoting quality patient care through medical and dental peer review activities.