Code of the District of Columbia

§ 31–3426. Confidentiality of medical information and limitation of liability.

(a) Any data or information pertaining to the diagnosis, treatment, or health of any enrollee or applicant obtained from such person or from any provider by any health maintenance organization shall be held in confidence and shall not be disclosed to any person except to the extent that it may be necessary to carry out the purposes of this chapter:

(1) When needed for the conduct of the health maintenance organization’s business;

(2) Upon the express consent of the enrollee or applicant;

(3) Pursuant to statute or court order for the production of evidence or the discovery thereof; or

(4) In the event of claim or litigation between such person and the health maintenance organization wherein such data or information is pertinent.

(b) A health maintenance organization shall be entitled to claim any statutory privileges against such disclosure which the provider who furnished such information to the health maintenance organization is entitled to claim.

(c) A person who, in good faith and without malice or negligence, takes any action or makes any decision or recommendation as a member, agent, or employee of a health care review committee, or who furnishes any records, information, or assistance to such a committee shall not be subject to liability for civil damages or any legal action in consequence of such action, nor shall the health maintenance organization which established such committee or the officers, directors, employees, or agents of such health maintenance organization be liable for the activities of any such person. This section shall not be construed to relieve any person of liability arising from treatment of a patient.

(d)(1) The information considered by a health care review committee and the records of their actions and proceedings shall be confidential and not subject to subpoena or order to produce except in proceedings before the appropriate District of Columbia licensing or certifying agency, or in an appeal, if permitted, from the committee’s findings or recommendations. No member of a health care review committee, or officer, director or other member of the health maintenance organization or its staff engaged in assisting such committee, or any person assisting or furnishing information to such committee, may be subpoenaed to testify in any judicial or quasi-judicial proceeding if such subpoena is based solely on such activities.

(2) Information considered by a health care review committee and the records of its action and proceedings which are used pursuant to this subsection by a state licensing or certifying agency or in appeal shall be kept confidential and shall be subject to the same provision concerning discovery and use in legal actions as are the original information and records in the possession and control of a health care review committee.

(e) To fulfill its obligations under § 31-3406, a health maintenance organization shall have access to treatment records and other information pertaining to the diagnosis, treatment, or health status of any enrollee.


(Apr. 9, 1997, D.C. Law 11-235, § 28, 44 DCR 818.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 35-4526.

Section References

This section is referenced in § 4-1371.06 and § 16-1054.