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Physicians, risk managers, and health care professionals in general, have long recognized the benefits that peer review committees can have on the quality of medical care provided to patients. Peer review committees allow the free exchange of ideas among groups of medical professionals concerning issues of morbidity and mortality in patient care, without fear that the matters discussed and the conclusions reached will become public.

Requests for the release of medical information are an inevitable part of the modern practice of medicine. The receipt of a formal subpoena may be intimidating if the process is unfamiliar. The following is a general reference guide to help you determine if a subpoena is valid, how you should respond, whether special privacy rules apply, and when you should get legal help.

While the majority of medical malpractice cases do not actually proceed all the way to trial, what happens when your case falls in the minority, and you are faced with the prospect of spending a week or more in the courtroom? No doubt you will spend hours with your attorney preparing the complex details of your testimony and responses to cross-examination. But what about the practical matters?

For anyone, being involved in a lawsuit as a defendant is an unpleasant experience. However, there are ways to make your own life, and that of your lawyer, easier. So what should you do when you receive notice that you are being sued?

This is a fairly common question posed by physicians who feel victimized by baseless medical malpractice actions. It is normal for one who feels wrongly accused to desire retribution from the individual who caused him to endure the stress of a lawsuit. Once the system has vindicated the doctor’s conduct, shouldn’t the plaintiff (or the plaintiff’s attorney) be held accountable? Unfortunately, the answer is a classic legal response: It depends.