The purpose of this article is to illustrate the inherent problems of blanket peer review confidentiality and to suggest a more equitable approach. Part I traces the deveopment of reviewing hospital quality and explains the operation and justifications of peer review committees. In Part II, the arguments supporting confidentiality are compared with the public policy favoring proper disposition of corporate negligence cases in order to determine and recommend the correct level of confidentiality. In Part III, the peer review discovery statute in section 2305.251 of the Ohio Revised COde is critically evaluated for its practical value to the advancement of hospital health care. The article concludes that a liberalization and redefinition of the Ohio statute has been long over-due and therefore, provides a model statute.This article will not address the discoverability of other hosital records, such as those protected by the physician-patient privelege or hospital incident reports. The potential for liability of review committee participants will not be covered in detail.
Howard S. Rabb, Peer Review Committee Minutes and Memoranda: Non-Discoverable at All Costs,1 J.L. & Health 249 (1985-1987)