(a) As used in this section, the following words mean:
(1) “Centers for Disease Control and Prevention” or “CDC” means the United States Department of Health and Human Services Centers for Disease Control and Prevention;
(2) “National Healthcare Safety Network” or “NHSN” means the secure Internet-based data collection surveillance system managed by the Division of Healthcare Quality Promotion at the CDC, created by the CDC for accumulating, exchanging and integrating relevant information on infectious adverse events associated with healthcare delivery.
(3) “Hospital” means hospital as that term is defined in subsection-e, section three, article twenty-nine-b, chapter sixteen.
(4) “Healthcare-associated infection” means a localized or systemic condition that results from an adverse reaction to the presence of an infectious agent or a toxin of an infectious agent that was not present or incubating at the time of admission to a hospital.
(5) “Physician” means a person licensed to practice medicine by either the board of Medicine or the board of osteopathy.
(6) “Nurse” means a person licensed in West Virginia as a registered professional nurse in accordance with article seven, chapter thirty.
(b) The Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Resources is hereby directed to create an Infection Control Advisory Panel whose duty is to provide guidance and oversight in implementing this section. The advisory panel shall consist of the following members:
(1) Two board-certified or board-eligible physicians, affiliated with a West Virginia hospital or medical school, who are active members of the Society for Health Care Epidemiology of America and who have demonstrated an interest in infection control;
(2) One physician who maintains active privileges to practice in at least one West Virginia hospital;
(3) Three infection control practitioners, two of whom are nurses, each certified by the Certification Board of Infection Control and Epidemiology, and each working in the area of infection control. Rural and urban practice must be represented;
(4) A statistician with an advanced degree in medical statistics;
(5) A microbiologist with an advanced degree in clinical microbiology;
(6) The Director of the Division of Disease Surveillance and Disease Control in the Bureau for Public Health or a designee; and
(7) The director of the hospital program in the office of health facilities, licensure and certification in the Bureau for Public Health.
(c) The advisory panel shall:
(1) Provide guidance to hospitals in their collection of healthcare-associated infections;
(2) Provide evidence-based practices in the control and prevention of healthcare associated infections;
(3) Establish reasonable goals to reduce the number of healthcare-associated infections;
(4) Develop plans for analyzing infection-related data from hospitals;
(5) Develop healthcare-associated advisories for hospital distribution;
(6) Review and recommend to the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Resources the manner in which the reporting is made available to the public to assure that the public understands the meaning of the report; and
(7) Other duties as identified by the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Resources.
(d) Hospitals shall report information on healthcare-associated infections in the manner prescribed by the CDC National Healthcare Safety Network(NHSN). The reporting standard prescribed by the CDC National Healthcare Safety Network(NHSN) shall be the reporting system of the hospitals in West Virginia.
(e) Hospitals who fail to report information on healthcare associated infections in the manner and time frame required by the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Resources shall be fined the sum of $5,000 for each such failure.
(f) The Infection Control Advisory Panel shall provide the results of the collection and analysis of all hospital data to the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Resources for public availability and the Bureau for Public Health for consideration in their hospital oversight and epidemiology and disease surveillance responsibilities in West Virginia.
(g) Data collected and reported pursuant to this act may not be considered to establish standards of care for any purposes of civil litigation in West Virginia.
(h) The Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Resources shall require that all hospitals implement and initiate this reporting requirement.