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Introduced Version House Bill 2569 History

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hb2569 intr
H. B. 2569


          (By Delegates Morgan, Stephens, Staggers,
              Eldridge, Paxton, Lynch and Border)
          [Introduced February 20, 2013; referred to the
          Committee on Government Organization.]



A BILL to amend and reenact §30-3-10 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, relating to requirements for licenses to practice medicine and surgery and licenses to practice podiatry; eliminating the requirement that applicants must appear before the West Virginia Board of Medicine if they have failed to pass certain national licensing examinations; and granting the Board of Medicine the authority to require applicants to appear in person or electronically and produce original documents.
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
  That §30-3-10 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, be amended and reenacted to read as follows:
ARTICLE 3. WEST VIRGINIA MEDICAL PRACTICE ACT.
§30-3-10. Licenses to practice medicine and surgery or podiatry.
              (a) The board shall issue a license to practice medicine and surgery or to practice podiatry to any individual who is qualified to do so in accordance with the provisions of this article.
              (b) For an individual to be licensed to practice medicine and surgery in this state, he or she must meet the following requirements:
              (1) He or she shall submit an application to the board on a form provided by the board and remit to the board a reasonable fee, the amount of the reasonable fee to be set by the board. The application must, as a minimum, require a sworn and notarized statement that the applicant is of good moral character and that he or she is physically and mentally capable of engaging in the practice of medicine and surgery;
              (2) He or she must provide evidence of graduation and receipt of the degree of doctor of medicine or its equivalent from a school of medicine, which is approved by the liaison committee on medical education or by the board;
              (3) He or she must submit evidence to the board of having successfully completed a minimum of one year of graduate clinical training in a program approved by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education; and
              (4) He or she must pass an examination approved by the board, which examination can be related to a national standard. The examination shall be in the English language and be designed to ascertain an applicant's fitness to practice medicine and surgery. The board shall before the date of examination determine what will constitute a passing score: Provided, That the board, or a majority of it, may accept in lieu of an examination of applicants the certificate of the National Board of Medical Examiners: Provided, however, That an applicant is required to attain a passing score on all components or steps of the examination within a period of ten consecutive years. Provided further, That an applicant who has failed to successfully complete and pass any one of the three steps of the United States medical licensing examination (USMLE) in three attempts is required to appear before the board for a determination by the board, in its discretion, as to what, if any, further education, evaluation and training is required for further consideration of licensure. The board need not reject a candidate for a nonmaterial technical or administrative error or omission in the application process that is unrelated to the candidate's professional qualifications as long as there is sufficient information available to the board to determine the eligibility of the candidate for licensure.
              (c) In addition to the requirements of subsection (b) of this section, any individual who has received the degree of doctor of medicine or its equivalent from a school of medicine located outside of the United States, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico and Canada to be licensed to practice medicine in this state must also meet the following additional requirements and limitations:
              (1) He or she must be able to demonstrate to the satisfaction of the board his or her ability to communicate in the English language;
              (2) Before taking a licensure examination, he or she must have fulfilled the requirements of the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates for certification or he or she must provide evidence of receipt of a passing score on the examination of the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates: Provided, That an applicant who: (i) Is currently fully licensed, excluding any temporary, conditional or restricted license or permit, under the laws of another state, the District of Columbia, Canada or the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico; (ii) has been engaged on a full-time professional basis in the practice of medicine within the state or jurisdiction where the applicant is fully licensed for a period of at least five years; and (iii) is not the subject of any pending disciplinary action by a medical licensing board and has not been the subject of professional discipline by a medical licensing board in any jurisdiction is not required to have a certificate from the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates;
              (3) He or she must submit evidence to the board of either:               (i) (A) Having successfully completed a minimum of two years of graduate clinical training in a program approved by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education; or
              (ii) (B) current certification by a member board of the American Board of Medical Specialties.
              (d) For an individual to be licensed to practice podiatry in this state, he or she must meet the following requirements:
              (1) He or she shall submit an application to the board on a form provided by the board and remit to the board a reasonable fee, the amount of the reasonable fee to be set by the board. The application must, as a minimum, require a sworn and notarized statement that the applicant is of good moral character and that he or she is physically and mentally capable of engaging in the practice of podiatric medicine;
              (2) He or she must provide evidence of graduation and receipt of the degree of doctor of podiatric medicine or its equivalent from a school of podiatric medicine which is approved by the Council of Podiatry Education or by the board;
              (3) He or she must pass an examination approved by the board, which examination can be related to a national standard. The examination shall be in the English language and be designed to ascertain an applicant's fitness to practice podiatric medicine. The board shall before the date of examination determine what will constitute a passing score: Provided, That an applicant is required to attain a passing score on all components or steps of the examination within a period of ten consecutive years; and Provided, however, That an applicant who has failed to successfully complete and pass any one of the three steps of the National Board of Podiatric Medical Examiners examination in three attempts shall be required to appear before the board for a determination by the board, in its discretion, as to what, if any, further education, evaluation and/or training is required for further consideration of licensure;
              (4) He or she must submit evidence to the board of having successfully completed a minimum of one year of graduate clinical training in a program approved by the Council on Podiatric Medical Education or the Colleges of Podiatric Medicine. The board may consider a minimum of two years of graduate podiatric clinical training in the U.S. Armed Forces or three years' private podiatric clinical experience in lieu of this requirement.
              (e) Notwithstanding any of the provisions of this article, the board may issue a restricted license to an applicant in extraordinary circumstances under the following conditions:
              (1) Upon a finding by the board that based on the applicant's exceptional education, training and practice credentials, the applicant's practice in the state would be beneficial to the public welfare;
              (2) Upon a finding by the board that the applicant's education, training and practice credentials are substantially equivalent to the requirements of licensure established in this article;
              (3) Upon a finding by the board that the applicant received his or her post-graduate medical training outside of the United States and its territories;
              (4) That the restricted license issued under extraordinary circumstances is approved by a vote of three fourths of the members of the board;
              (5) That orders denying applications for a restricted license under this subsection are not appealable; and
              (6) That the board report to the President of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Delegates all decisions made pursuant to this subsection and the reasons for those decisions.
              (f) The board shall propose rules for legislative approval in accordance with the provisions of article three, chapter twenty-nine-a of this code, that establish and regulate the restricted license issued to an applicant in extraordinary circumstances pursuant to the provisions of this section.
              (g) The board may require applicants to appear in person or electronically before the board and, upon request, to produce original documents to the board.
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(g) (h) All licenses to practice medicine and surgery granted prior to July 1, 2008, and valid on that date shall continue in full effect for the term and under the conditions provided by law at the time of the granting of the license: Provided, That the provisions of subsection (d) of this section do does not apply to any person legally entitled to practice chiropody or podiatry in this state prior to June 11, 1965: Provided, however, That all persons licensed to practice chiropody prior to June 11, 1965, shall be permitted to use the term "chiropody-podiatry" and shall have the rights, privileges and responsibilities of a podiatrist set out in this article.
              (h) (i) The board may not issue a license to a person not previously licensed in West Virginia whose license has been revoked or suspended in another state until reinstatement of his or her license in that state.

              NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to eliminate the requirement that applicants for licenses to practice medicine and surgery or podiatry who have failed to pass any of the three steps of the United States Medical Licensing Examination or National Board of Podiatric Examiners examination must appear before the West Virginia Board of Medicine. The bill authorizes the Board of Medicine to require personal interviews and documents on a case-by-case basis.

              Strike-throughs indicate language that would be stricken from the present law and underscoring indicates new language that would be added.
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