2016 New Mexico Statutes
Chapter 41 - Torts
Article 5 - Medical Malpractice Act
Section 41-5-20 - Panel deliberations and decision.

NM Stat § 41-5-20 (2016) What's This?

41-5-20. Panel deliberations and decision.

A. The deliberations of the panel shall be and remain confidential. Upon consideration of all the relevant material, the panel shall decide only two questions:

(1) whether there is substantial evidence that the acts complained of occurred and that they constitute malpractice; and

(2) whether there is a reasonable medical probability that the patient was injured thereby.

B. All votes of the panel on the two questions for decision shall be by secret ballot. The decision shall be by a majority vote of those voting members of the panel who have sat on the entire case. The decision shall be communicated in writing to the parties and attorneys concerned and a copy thereof shall be retained in the permanent files of the commission.

C. The decision shall in every case be signed for the panel by the chairman, who shall vote only in the event the other members of the panel are evenly divided, and shall contain only the conclusions reached by a majority of its members and the number of members, if any, dissenting therefrom; provided, however, that if the vote is not unanimous, the majority may briefly explain the reasoning and basis for their conclusion, and the dissenters may likewise explain the reasons for disagreement.

D. The report of the medical review panel shall not be admissible as evidence in any action subsequently brought in a court of law. A copy of the report shall be sent to the health care provider's professional licensing board.

E. Panelists and witnesses shall have absolute immunity from civil liability for all communications, findings, opinions and conclusions made in the course and scope of duties prescribed by the Medical Malpractice Act.

F. The panel's decisions shall be without administrative or judicial authority and shall not be binding on any party. The panel shall make no effort to settle or compromise any claim nor express any opinion on the monetary value of any claim.

History: 1953 Comp., 58-33-20, enacted by Laws 1976, ch. 2, 20.

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