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Important Information

from the State Medical Board of Ohio

Special Meeting May 23, 2019

The State Medical Board of Ohio has voted to waive its confidentiality interest in the investigative materials involving Richard Strauss, M.D. with protections for individuals who have not waived their confidentiality interests. This vote allows OSU to unredact information from the university’s report if they are able to obtain waivers of confidentiality from each entity that was involved with the Medical Board investigation

 

Under the case law interpreting Ohio Revised Code 4731.22(F)(5), several parties have confidentiality rights in the board’s investigative files, and each must waive confidentiality before their portion of the materials can be made public. Entities involved include:

• Medical Board

• Complainant

• Witnesses

• Patients/victims

• Doctors/licensees

 

This confidentiality law protects sensitive patient information from being inappropriately released to the public. However, investigative information protected under section 4731.22(F)(5) may be released to another governmental agency only if that agency is conducting an investigation of a violation of laws and rules.

 

In December 2018, the State Medical Board of Ohio provided all of its investigation files regarding Richard Strauss, M.D. to Ohio State University as a governmental agency conducting an investigation of a violation of laws and rules. The investigative file provided to Ohio State University was unredacted, with the exception of any social security numbers included in the file.

 

The statute requires that the governmental agency in receipt of the board’s investigative materials must keep the information confidential in the same manner as the Medical Board is required to do. Ohio State indicated that some individuals with a confidentiality interest have waived that interest and asked the Medical Board to consider waiving its confidentiality interest as well. During the May 23 special meeting, the Medical Board agreed to the waiver and urged Ohio State to use this opportunity to release additional information redacted from its investigation report.

 



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