Brendan A. Sorg


This comment lays the foundation to evaluate the sustainability of Amendment 7 post-PSQIA in Part II by first examining medical peer review, its origin, its evolution and why peer review remains important to patient safety. Although many physicians dislike peer review, Congress has acknowledged its importance by making peer review mandatory and by providing the statutory protections to ensure peer review remains meaningful.7 States have followed suit, passing their own laws that provide for the protection of peer review materials. Part II also addresses how Amendment 7 reversed Florida’s historical approach providing broad peer review protection and how this erosion of peer review protection served as a foundation for the federal statutory protections provided by the PSQIA. Part III, the Statement of the Issue, describes the losing arguments that hospitals attempted to employ to protect against Amendment 7 requests, and why, in lieu of a new PSQIA argument, Amendment 7 is ripe for new round of litigation. Part IV provides an overview of PSQIA’s framework and explains how the practical implementation of the PSQIA’s statutory protection limits Amendment 7. Furthermore, this analysis section explores the likelihood of a common law medical peer review privilege, and why the trend in federal courts and the analytical framework applied by the United States Supreme Court suggests an expanded common law peer review privilege may become a reality. In closing, this comment discusses why the benefits of an expanded medical peer review privilege outweigh the risks, and identifies current Florida litigation that may undo Amendment 7 and completely restore meaningful peer review in Florida.