Virginia: Medical Malpractice – a Lawyer’s Procedures

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By letter opinion on August 10, 2015, Judge Williams of Martinsville, Virginia, rejected multiple defendants’  claims of privilege and held “hospital’s policies procedures, and protocols” discoverable in the wrongful death case of Penn v. PHC–Martinsville, Inc. d/b/a Mem’l Hosp. of Martinsville and Henry County, No. CL15-071.  Notably, before ruling, Judge Williams consulted with the other Judges of the Twenty–First Judicial Court of Virginia, comprised by Henry County, Patrick County, and City of Martinsville.  Id. at 2.


“Once the peer review process and deliberations are complete, the hospital’s policies, procedures, and protocols do not require protection from discovery,” the Penn medical malpractice opinion observed.  “Also, the General Assembly did not include policies, procedures, and protocols in the 2011 amendment [of Va. Code §8.01–581.17].” Id.


Further, Penn held that “employment contracts and agreements requested” by the wrongful death plaintiff likewise were discoverable.  Only financial information had to be redacted.  Id.