WEST virginia legislature
2016 regular session
Senate Bill 47
By Senator Ferns
[Originating in the Committee on Government Organization; reported on February 25, 2016.]
A BILL to amend and reenact §30-3-13 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, relating to practice of medicine; rewriting licensing requirements for practice of medicine and surgery or podiatry; making exceptions; providing for unauthorized practice; requiring notice; establishing criminal penalties; making exceptions; and defining terms.
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That §30-3-13 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, be amended and reenacted to read as follows:
ARTICLE 3. WEST VIRGINIA MEDICAL PRACTICE ACT.
§30-3-13. Licensing requirements for the practice of medicine and surgery or podiatry; exceptions; unauthorized practice; notice; criminal penalties.
(a) It is unlawful for any person who does not hold an active, unexpired license issued pursuant to this article, or who is not practicing pursuant to the licensure exceptions set forth in this section, to:
(1) Engage in the practice of medicine and surgery or podiatry in this state;
(2) Represent that he or she is a physician, surgeon or podiatrist authorized to practice medicine and surgery or podiatry in this state; or
(3) Use any title, word or abbreviation to indicate or induce others to believe that he or she is licensed to practice medicine and surgery or podiatry in this state.
(b) It is unlawful for any person who does not hold an
active, unexpired license
issued pursuant to this article
to engage in the practice of telemedicine within this state. As used in this section, the “practice of telemedicine” means the practice of medicine using communication tools such as electronic
communication, information technology or other means of interaction between a
licensed health care professional in one location and a patient in another
location, with or without an intervening health care provider, and typically involves
secure real time audio/video conferencing or similar secure audio/video
services, remote monitoring, interactive video and store and forward digital
image or health data technology to provide or support health care delivery by
replicating the interaction of a traditional in person encounter between a
provider and a patient. The practice
of telemedicine occurs in this state when the patient receiving health care
services through a telemedicine encounter is physically located in this state.
(c) It is not unlawful for a person:
(1) Who is a licensed health care provider under this code to act within his or her scope of practice;
(2) Who is not a licensed health care professional in this state to provide first aid care in an emergency situation; or
(3) To engage in the bona fide religious tenets of any recognized church in the administration of assistance to the sick or suffering by mental or spiritual means.
(d) The following persons are exempt from the licensure requirements under this article:
(1) A person enrolled in a school of medicine approved by the Liaison Committee on Medical Education or by the board;
(2) A person enrolled in a school of podiatric medicine approved by the Council of Podiatry Education or by the board;
(3) A person engaged in graduate medical training in a program approved by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education or the board;
(4) A person engaged in graduate podiatric training in a program approved by the Council on Podiatric Education or by the board;
(5) A physician or podiatrist engaged in the performance of his or her official duties holding one or more licenses from another state or foreign country and who is a commissioned medical officer of, a member of or employed by:
(A) The United States Military;
(B) The Department of Defense;
(C) The United States Public Health Service; or
(D) Any other federal agency;
(6) A physician or podiatrist holding one or more unrestricted licenses granted by another state or foreign country serving as visiting medical faculty engaged in education, training or research duties at a medical school or institution recognized by the board for up to six months if:
(A) The physician does not engage in the practice of medicine and surgery or podiatry outside of the auspices of the sponsoring school or institution; and
(B) The sponsoring medical school or institution provides prior written notification to the board including the physician’s name, all jurisdictions of licensure and the beginning and end date of the physician’s visiting medical faculty status;
(7) A physician or podiatrist holding one or more unrestricted licenses granted by another state present in the state as a member of an air ambulance treatment team or organ harvesting team;
(8) A physician or podiatrist holding one or more unrestricted licenses granted by another state or foreign country providing a consultation on a singular occasion to a licensed physician or podiatrist in this state, whether the consulting physician or podiatrist is physically present in the state for the consultation or not;
(9) A physician or podiatrist holding one or more unrestricted licenses granted by another state or foreign country providing teaching assistance, in a medical capacity, for a period not to exceed seven days;
(10) A physician or podiatrist holding one or more unrestricted licenses granted by another state or foreign country serving as a volunteer in a noncompensated role for a charitable function for a period not to exceed seven days; and
(11) A physician or podiatrist holding one or more unrestricted licenses granted by another state or foreign country providing medical services to a college or university affiliated and/or sponsored sports team or an incorporated sports team if:
(A) He or she has a written agreement with that sports team to provide
care to team members, coaching staff and families traveling with the team for a specific sporting event, team appearance or training camp occurring in this state;
(B) He or she may only provide care or consultation to team members, coaching staff and families traveling with the team no longer than seven consecutive days per sporting event;
(C) He or she is not authorized to practice at a health care facility or clinic, acute care facility or urgent care center located in this state, but the physician may accompany the patient to the facility and consult; and
(D) The physician or podiatrist may be permitted, by written permission from the executive director, to extend his or her authorization to practice medicine for a maximum of seven additional consecutive days if the requestor shows good cause for the extension.
(e) A physician or podiatrist who does not hold a license issued by the board and who is practicing medicine in this state pursuant to the exceptions to licensure set forth in this section may practice in West Virginia under one or more of the licensure exceptions for no greater than a cumulative total of thirty days in any one calendar year.
(f) The executive director shall send by certified mail to a physician not licensed in this state a written order that revokes the privilege to practice medicine under this section if the executive director finds good cause to do so. If no current address can be determined, the order may be sent by regular mail to the physician’s last known address.
(g) A person who engages in the unlawful practice of medicine and surgery or podiatry while holding a license issued pursuant to this article which has been classified by the board as expired for ninety days or fewer is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, shall be fined not more than $5,000 or confined in jail not more than twelve months, or both fined and confined.
(h) A person who is found to be engaging in the practice of medicine and: (1) Has never been licensed by the board under this article; (2) holds a license which has been classified by the board as expired for greater than ninety days; or (3) holds a license which has been placed in inactive status, revoked, suspended or surrendered to the board is guilty of a felony and, upon conviction, shall be fined not more than $10,000 or imprisoned in a correctional facility, or both fined and imprisoned.
(i) Upon a determination by the board that any report or complaint submitted to it concerns allegations of the unlawful practice of medicine and surgery by an individual who is licensed under another article of this chapter, the board shall refer the complaint to the appropriate licensing authority. Additionally, whenever the board receives credible information that an individual is engaging in the unlawful practice of medicine and surgery or podiatry in violation of this section, the board may report such information to the appropriate state and/or federal law enforcement authority and/or prosecuting attorney.
NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to reformulate what constitutes the unauthorized practice of medicine and podiatry under the West Virginia Board of Medicine, including qualified exemptions. The bill establishes criminal penalties for unauthorized medical practice. The bill authorizes rule-making.
Strike-throughs indicate language that would be stricken from a heading or the present law and underscoring indicates new language that would be added.
§30-3-13 has been completely rewritten; therefore, it has been completely underscored.