(a) The medical advisor shall establish a medical quality review panel of health care providers to assist the medical advisor in performing the duties required under Section 413.0511. The panel is not subject to Chapter 2110, Government Code.
(b) The agencies that regulate health professionals who are licensed or otherwise authorized to practice a health profession under Title 3, Occupations Code, and who are involved in the provision of health care as part of the workers' compensation system in this state shall develop lists of health care providers licensed or otherwise regulated by those agencies who have demonstrated experience in workers' compensation or utilization review. The medical advisor shall consider appointing some of the members of the medical quality review panel from the names on those lists and, when appointing members of the medical quality review panel, shall select specialists from various health care specialty fields to serve on the panel to ensure that the membership of the panel has expertise in a wide variety of health care specialty fields. The medical advisor shall also consider nominations for the panel made by labor, business, and insurance organizations.
(c) The medical quality review panel shall recommend to the medical advisor:
(1) appropriate action regarding doctors, other health care providers, insurance carriers, utilization review agents, and independent review organizations;
(2) the addition or deletion of doctors from the list of approved doctors under Section 408.023; and
(3) the certification, revocation of certification, or denial of renewal of certification of a designated doctor under Section 408.1225.
(d) A person who serves on the medical quality review panel is immune from suit and from civil liability for an act performed, or a recommendation made, within the scope of the person's functions as a member of the panel if the person acts without malice and in the reasonable belief that the action or recommendation is warranted by the facts known to that person. In the event of a civil action brought against a member of the panel that arises from the person's participation on the panel, the person is entitled to the same protections afforded the commissioner under Section 402.00123.
(e) The actions of a person serving on the medical quality review panel do not constitute utilization review and are not subject to Chapter 4201, Insurance Code.
(f) A member of the medical quality review panel who reviews a specific workers' compensation case is subject to Section 408.0043, 408.0044, or 408.0045, as applicable.
(g) The medical advisor shall notify the division if the medical advisor determines that:
(1) it is no longer necessary for the medical quality review panel to include a member that practices in a particular health care specialty field; or
(2) there is a need for the panel to include a member that practices in a particular health care specialty field not represented on the panel.
(h) If the division receives notice from the medical advisor under Subsection (g)(2), the division may enter into agreements with other state agencies to access, as necessary, expertise in that health care specialty field.
Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1456, § 1.02, eff. June 17, 2001. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 963, § 2, eff. June 20, 2003.
Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 265 (H.B. 7), § 3.252, eff. September 1, 2005.
Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1218 (H.B. 2004), § 7, eff. September 1, 2007.
Acts 2011, 82nd Leg., R.S., Ch. 1162 (H.B. 2605), § 23, eff. September 1, 2011.