Hospital Privileges & Peer Review
Medical License Defense Attorney
A medical license defense attorney is essential because a Florida professional (physician, nurse, or other) whose practice is integrally related to the use of a hospital or its facilities will, by virtue of the hospital bylaws, be subject to review of their competence, professionalism, and behavior in proceedings titled peer-review. Regrettably, these undertakings are frequently subject to what hospitals and other staff members interpret to be their version of peer review and procedural due process absent your true peers as to your specialty or area of practice. Therefore, peer review issues can frequently accelerate and become difficult to defend or mitigate unless you involve counsel early on in the process.
Not infrequently, independent minded professionals venture into peer review proceedings not mindful of the relaxed evidentiary and procedural rules that are in play assuming, wrongly, that they merely need to answer a few lightweight questions and their friends or acquaintances from the hospital staff that will sit in judgment of them will exonerate them. These assumptions are wholly lacking as a committee mindset always trumps any sense of loyalty to a fellow professional given the need to present an unbiased hearing of the evidence.
In a peer review scenario, you will be asked to defend or present your version of (1) what took place, or (2) why you did what you did, or (3) why you behaved the way you did, or finally, (4) how the facts alleged are not accurate. At each stage of this review, everything you say or do or previously said or did can be used against you. Therefore, you must keep (1) accurate and non-judgmental patient records and, (2) careful notes as to negative hospital staff or third-party encounters; be assured that the other side is doing that as well including bringing-in outside experts where appropriate to review your performance or competence based on chart reviews.
I frequently hear people subject to peer review say that “this is no big deal, the whole thing has been blown out of proportion. I didn’t do anything wrong. It’s really silly.” You should know that is an analysis shared only by you. Be prepared to expend a great deal of time and resources in your administrative defense. Wisely consider having an advocate by your side. A medical license defense attorney can help you preserve your image.