H. B. 3266
(By Delegates Perry and Louisos)
[Introduced March 25, 2005; referred to the
Committee on Health and Human Resources then the
A BILL to amend the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, by
adding thereto a new article, designated §16-2J-1, §16-2J-2,
§16-2J-3, §16-2J-4, §16-2J-5, §16-2J-6 and §16-2J-7, all
requiring physicians to file regular reports with
the Department of Health and Human Resources, regarding
patients who require medical treatment as a result of an
abortion; providing criminal penalties for violation.
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, be amended
by adding thereto a new article, designated §16-2J-1, §16-2J-2,
§16-2J-3, §16-2J-4, §16-2J-5, §16-2J-6 and §16-2J-7, all to read as
ARTICLE 2J. ABORTION COMPLICATION REPORTING ACT.
§16-2J-1. Short title.
This article shall be known and may be cited as the Abortion Complication Reporting Act.
As used in this article:
(a) "Medical treatment" means, but is not limited to,
hospitalization, laboratory tests, surgery or prescription of
(b) "Department" means the State Department of Health and
§16-2J-3. Physician to file report.
(1) A physician shall file a written report with the State
Department of Health and Human Resources regarding each patient who
comes under the physician's professional care and requires medical
treatment or suffers death that the attending physician has a
reasonable basis to believe is a primary, secondary, or tertiary
result of an induced abortion.
(2) These reports shall be submitted within thirty days of
the discharge or death of the patient treated for the complication.
(3) The Department shall summarize aggregate data from the
reports required under this section for purposes of inclusion into
the annual Vital Statistics Report.
(4) The Department shall develop and distribute or make
available online in a downloadable format a standardized form for
the report required under this section.
(5) The Department shall communicate this reporting requirement to all medical professional organizations, licensed
physicians, hospitals, emergency rooms, abortion facilities, and
ambulatory surgical facilities operating in the state.
(6) The Department shall destroy each individual report
required by this section and each copy of the report after
retaining the report for five years after the date the report is
(7) The report required under this section shall not contain
the name of the woman, common identifiers such as her social
security number or motor vehicle operator's license number or other
information or identifiers that would make it possible to identify
in any manner or under any circumstances an individual who has
obtained or seeks to obtain an abortion. A state agency shall not
compare data in an electronic or other information system file with
data in another electronic or other information system that would
result in identifying in any manner or under any circumstances an
individual obtaining or seeking to obtain an abortion. Statistical
information that may reveal the identity of a woman obtaining or
seeking to obtain an abortion shall not be maintained.
(8) The Department or an employee of the Department shall not
disclose to a person or entity outside the Department the reports
or the contents of the reports required under this section in a
manner or fashion as to permit the person or entity to whom the
report is disclosed to identify in any way the person who is the subject of the report.
(9) Disclosure of confidential identifying information in
violation of this section shall constitute a felony which, upon
conviction, shall be punished by imprisonment in a state
correctional facility for not more than three years, or a fine of
not more than five thousand dollars, or both.
§16-2J-4. Information to be included in report.
(1) Each report of medical treatment following abortion
required under section four of this article shall contain the
(a) The age and race of the patient;
(b) The characteristics of the patient, including residency
status, county of residence, marital status, education, number of
previous pregnancies, number of stillbirths, number of living
children and number of previous abortions;
(c) The date the abortion was performed and the method used if
(d) The type of facility where the abortion was performed;
(e) The condition of the patient that led to treatment,
including, but not limited to, pelvic infection, hemorrhage, damage
to pelvic organs, renal failure, metabolic disorder, shock,
embolism, coma or death.
(f) The amount billed to cover the treatment of the
complication, including whether the treatment was billed to Medicaid, insurance, private pay or other method. This should
include charges for physician, hospital, emergency room,
prescription or other drugs, laboratory tests and any other costs
for the treatment rendered.
(2) Nothing in this article shall be construed as an
instruction to discontinue collecting data currently being
§16-2J-5. Criminal penalties.
Willful violation of the provisions of this article shall
constitute a misdemeanor and punishable by a fine of one hundred
dollars, except that disclosure of confidential identifying
information shall constitute a felony, punishable by imprisonment
for not less than one nor more than five years and a fine of ten
thousand dollars. No physician or hospital, its officers,
employees or medical and nursing personnel practicing in the
hospital shall be civilly liable for violation of the provisions of
this article, except to the extent of liability for actual damages
in a civil action for willful or reckless and wanton acts or
omissions constituting that violation. However, that liability
shall be subject to any immunities or limitations of liability or
damages provided by law.
The provisions of the article are declared to be severable,
and if any provision, word, phrase, or clause of the article or the application thereof to any person is held invalid, the invalidity
shall not affect the validity of the remaining portions of this
§16-2J-7. Effective date.
This article shall take effect and be in force from and after
the first day of July, two thousand five.
The purpose of this bill is to
require physicians to
file regular reports with DHHR, regarding patients who require
medical treatment as a result of an abortion; providing criminal
penalties for violation.
Article 2J is new; therefore, strike-throughs and underscoring
have been omitted.