Florida Senate - 2022                                    SB 1350
       By Senator Diaz
       36-01222-22                                           20221350__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to public records and meetings;
    3         creating s. 395.3027, F.S.; providing an exemption
    4         from public records requirements for certain
    5         confidential information held by in-hospital medical
    6         staff committees of public hospitals; providing an
    7         exemption from public meetings requirements for
    8         portions of meetings held by such medical staff
    9         committees during which such confidential information
   10         is discussed; requiring the recording and
   11         transcription of exempt portions of such meetings;
   12         providing an exemption from public records
   13         requirements for such recordings and transcripts;
   14         providing for future legislative review and repeal of
   15         the exemptions; providing a statement of public
   16         necessity; providing an effective date.
   18  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   20         Section 1. Section 395.3027, Florida Statutes, is created
   21  to read:
   22         395.3027Confidentiality of in-hospital medical staff
   23  committee records and meetings.—
   24         (1)The records held by an in-hospital medical staff
   25  committee, including, but not limited to, any medical executive
   26  committee or credentialing committee, or agent thereof, of a
   27  public hospital which contain any of the following information
   28  are confidential and exempt from s. 119.07(1) and s. 24(a), Art.
   29  I of the State Constitution:
   30         (a)Individually identifiable health information protected
   31  under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of
   32  1996, or its implementing regulations.
   33         (b)Personal identifying information of hospital personnel.
   34         (c)Information relating to:
   35         1.Pending legal matters, including, but not limited to,
   36  litigation strategy.
   37         2.Contract negotiations.
   38         3.Personnel matters.
   39         4.Peer review procedures.
   40         5.Trade secrets as defined in s. 688.002.
   41         (2)Any portion of an in-hospital medical staff committee
   42  meeting during which information that is confidential and exempt
   43  pursuant to subsection (1) is discussed is exempt from s.
   44  286.011 and s. 24(b), Art. I of the State Constitution. A
   45  complete recording and transcript must be made of any portion of
   46  a meeting which is closed pursuant to this subsection, and any
   47  closed portion of such meeting may not be held off the record.
   48  The recordings and transcripts of the closed portion of a
   49  meeting are exempt from s. 119.07(1) and s. 24(a), Art. I of the
   50  State Constitution.
   51         (3)This section is subject to the Open Government Sunset
   52  Review Act in accordance with s. 119.15 and shall stand repealed
   53  on October 2, 2027, unless reviewed and saved from repeal
   54  through reenactment by the Legislature.
   55         Section 2. (1)The Legislature finds that it is a public
   56  necessity that the records held by in-hospital medical staff
   57  committees, including, but not limited to, medical executive
   58  committees and credentialing committees, or agents thereof, of
   59  public hospitals which contain individually identifiable health
   60  information; the personal identifying information of hospital
   61  personnel; and information relating to pending legal matters,
   62  contract negotiations, personnel matters, peer review
   63  procedures, and trade secrets be made confidential and exempt
   64  from disclosure under s. 119.07(1), Florida Statutes, and s.
   65  24(a), Article I of the State Constitution. The Legislature also
   66  finds that subjecting the records of these in-hospital medical
   67  staff committees to the public records requirements could cause
   68  unnecessary harm to individuals whose personal identifying
   69  information and confidential health information are revealed and
   70  would impair public hospitals from effectively competing in the
   71  marketplace against private hospitals whose records are not
   72  required to be open to the public.
   73         (2)The Legislature finds that it is a public necessity
   74  that any portion of meetings held by in-hospital medical staff
   75  committees of public hospitals during which the confidential and
   76  exempt information described in subsection (1) is discussed be
   77  made exempt from s. 286.011, Florida Statutes, and s. 24(b),
   78  Article I of the State Constitution and that the recordings and
   79  transcripts of such meetings be made exempt from s. 119.07(1),
   80  Florida Statutes, and s. 24(a), Article I of the State
   81  Constitution. Such meetings are designed to encourage the free
   82  discussion and exchange of ideas between health care
   83  practitioners and other hospital personnel, which could be
   84  blunted if such confidential and sensitive information were
   85  subject to disclosure. The Legislature also finds that
   86  subjecting these in-hospital medical staff committees to the
   87  public meetings requirements is duplicative since the final
   88  decisions made by medical staff committees are subsequently
   89  presented to a public body at publicly noticed meetings.
   90  Furthermore, the failure to exempt the recordings and
   91  transcripts of such meetings would defeat the purpose of the
   92  public meetings exemption. Therefore, the Legislature finds that
   93  the public and private harm in disclosing the confidential
   94  information and records outweighs any public benefit derived
   95  from the disclosure of such information.
   96         Section 3. This act shall take effect October 1, 2022.