4734.32 Reports of disciplinary actions by health care facility.

(A)

(1) Except as provided in division (A)(2) of this section, if formal disciplinary action is taken against a chiropractor by any health care facility, including a clinic, hospital, or similar facility, the chief administrator or executive officer of the facility shall file a report with the state chiropractic board not later than sixty days after the disciplinary action is imposed. The report shall include the name of the individual, the action taken by the facility, and a summary of the underlying facts leading to the action taken. On request, the board shall be provided certified copies of the patient records that were the basis for the facility's action. Prior to release to the board, the summary shall be approved by the peer review committee that reviewed the case or by the governing board of the facility. The filing of a report with the board, a decision not to file a report with the board, an investigation by the board, or any disciplinary action taken by the board, does not preclude a health care facility from taking disciplinary action against a chiropractor. In the absence of fraud or bad faith, no individual or entity that provides patient records to the board shall be liable in damages to any person as a result of providing the records.

(2) Disciplinary action taken against a chiropractor by a chiropractic clinic need not be reported to the board in either of the following circumstances:

(a) The clinic takes the disciplinary action for reasons that do not involve clinical or patient care issues.

(b) The clinic employs fewer than five chiropractors and the disciplinary action taken does not rise above the level of a written reprimand.

(B) A chiropractor or professional association or society of chiropractors that believes a violation of any provision of this chapter or rule of the board has occurred shall report to the board the information upon which the belief is based. This division does not require any treatment provider approved by the board under section 4734.40 of the Revised Code or any employee, agent, or representative of such a provider to make reports with respect to a chiropractor participating in treatment or aftercare for substance abuse as long as the chiropractor maintains participation in accordance with the requirements of section 4734.40 of the Revised Code and the treatment provider or employee, agent, or representative of the provider has no reason to believe that the chiropractor has violated any provision of this chapter or rule adopted under it, other than being impaired by alcohol, drugs, or other substances. This division does not require reporting by any member of an impaired practitioner committee established by a health care facility or by any representative or agent of a committee or program sponsored by a professional association or society of chiropractors to provide peer assistance to chiropractors with substance abuse problems with respect to a chiropractor who has been referred for examination to a treatment program approved by the board under section 4734.40 of the Revised Code if the chiropractor cooperates with the referral for examination and with any determination that the chiropractor should enter treatment and as long as the committee member, representative, or agent has no reason to believe that the chiropractor has ceased to participate in the treatment program in accordance with section 4734.40 of the Revised Code or has violated any provision of this chapter or rule adopted under it, other than being impaired by alcohol, drugs, or other substances.

(C) Any professional association or society composed primarily of chiropractors that suspends or revokes an individual's membership for violations of professional ethics, or for reasons of professional incompetence or professional malpractice, within sixty days after a final decision, shall report to the board, on forms prescribed and provided by the board, the name of the individual, the action taken by the professional organization, and a summary of the underlying facts leading to the action taken. The filing of a report with the board, a decision not to file a report with the board, an investigation by the board, or any disciplinary action taken by the board, shall not preclude a professional organization from taking disciplinary action against a chiropractor.

(D) Any insurer providing professional liability insurance to any person holding a valid license as a chiropractor or any other entity that seeks to indemnify the professional liability of a chiropractor shall notify the board within thirty days after the final disposition of any written claim for damages where such disposition results in a payment exceeding ten thousand dollars. The notice shall contain the following information:

(1) The name and address of the person submitting the notification;

(2) The name and address of the insured who is the subject of the claim;

(3) The name of the person filing the written claim;

(4) The date of final disposition;

(5) If applicable, the identity of the court in which the final disposition of the claim took place.

(E) The board may investigate possible violations of this chapter or the rules adopted under it that are brought to its attention as a result of the reporting requirements of this section, except that the board shall conduct an investigation if a possible violation involves repeated malpractice. As used in this division, "repeated malpractice" means three or more claims for malpractice within the previous five-year period, each resulting in a judgment or settlement in excess of ten thousand dollars in favor of the claimant, and each involving tortious conduct by the chiropractor.

(F) All summaries, reports, and records received and maintained by the board pursuant to this section shall be held in confidence and shall not be subject to discovery or introduction in evidence in any federal or state civil action involving a chiropractor or health care facility arising out of matters that are the subject of the reporting required by this section. The board may use the information obtained only as the basis for an investigation, as evidence in a disciplinary hearing against a chiropractor, or in any subsequent trial or appeal of a board action or order. The board may disclose the summaries and reports it receives under this section only to health care facility committees within or outside this state that are involved in credentialing or recredentialing a chiropractor or reviewing the chiropractor's privilege to practice within a particular facility. The board shall indicate whether or not the information has been verified. Information transmitted by the board shall be subject to the same confidentiality provisions as when maintained by the board.

(G) Except for reports filed by an individual pursuant to division (B) of this section, the board shall send a copy of any reports or summaries it receives pursuant to this section to the chiropractor. The chiropractor shall have the right to file a statement with the board concerning the correctness or relevance of the information. The statement shall at all times accompany that part of the record in contention.

(H) An individual or entity that reports to the board or refers an impaired chiropractor to a treatment provider approved by the board under section 4734.40 of the Revised Code shall not be subject to suit for civil damages as a result of the report, referral, or provision of the information.

(I) In the absence of fraud or bad faith, a professional association or society of chiropractors that sponsors a committee or program to provide peer assistance to a chiropractor with substance abuse problems, a representative or agent of such a committee or program, and a member of the state chiropractic board shall not be held liable in damages to any person by reason of actions taken to refer a chiropractor to a treatment provider approved under section 4734.40 of the Revised Code for examination or treatment.

Cite as R.C. § 4734.32

History. Effective Date: 04-10-2001