H. B. 4341
(By Delegates Prunty, Caputo
and Fantasia, By Request)
[Introduced February 11, 1998; referred to the
Committee on Health and Human Resources then Government
A BILL to amend and reenact section one, article twenty-nine,
chapter sixteen of the code of West Virginia, one thousand
nine hundred thirty-one, as amended; and to further amend
said article by adding thereto a new section, designated
section one-a, all relating to requiring that the results of
diagnostic tests be reported to a patient by a treating
physician within twenty-four hours from the time the
physician receives the results.
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That section one, article twenty-nine, chapter sixteen of
the code of West Virginia, one thousand nine hundred thirty-one,
as amended, be amended and reenacted; and to further amend said
article by adding thereto a new section, designated section
one-a, all to read as follows:
ARTICLE 29. HEALTH CARE RECORDS.
§16-29-1. Copies of health care records to be furnished to patients.
Any licensed, certified or registered health care provider
so licensed, certified or registered under the laws of this state
shall, upon the written request of a patient, his or her
authorized agent or authorized representative, within a
reasonable time, furnish a copy, as requested, of all or a
portion of the patient's record to the patient, his or her
authorized agent or authorized representative subject to the
(a) In the case of a patient receiving treatment for
psychiatric or psychological problems, a summary of the record
shall be made available to the patient, his or her authorized
agent or authorized representative following termination of the
(b) Nothing in this article shall be construed to require a
health care provider responsible for diagnosis, treatment or
administering health care services in the case of minors for
birth control, prenatal care, drug rehabilitation or related
services or venereal disease according to any provision of this
code, to release patient records of such diagnosis, treatment or
provision of health care as aforesaid to a parent or guardian,
without prior written consent therefor from the patient, nor
shall anything in this article be construed to apply to persons
regulated under the provisions of chapter eighteen of this code or the rules
and regulations established thereunder.
(c) The furnishing of a copy, as requested, of the reports
of X ray examinations, electrocardiograms and other diagnostic
procedures, shall be deemed to comply with the provisions of this
article, except as otherwise provided for in section one-a of
this article: Provided, That original radiological study film
from a radiological exam conducted pursuant to a request from a
patient or patient's representative shall be provided to the
patient or patient's representative upon written request and
payment for the exam. The health care provider shall not be
required to interpret or retain copies of the film and shall be
immune from liability resulting from any action relating to the
absence of the original radiological film from the patient's
(d) This article shall not apply to records subpoenaed or
otherwise requested through court process.
(e) The provisions of this article may be enforced by a
patient, authorized agent or authorized representative, and any
health care provider found to be in violation of this article
shall pay any attorney fees and costs, including court costs
incurred in the course of such enforcement.
(f) Nothing in this article shall be construed to apply to
health care records maintained by health care providers governed
by the AIDS-related medical testing and records confidentiality act under the provisions of article three-c of this chapter.
§16-29-1a. Results of diagnostic tests to be provided to
patients within twenty-four hours of receiving results.
Notwithstanding any provision of the code to the contrary
and without any requirement that a request be made, a result
obtained from any diagnostic testing procedure performed to
detect any disease or physical condition shall be reported by a
treating physician to the patient upon whom the diagnostic test
was performed within twenty-four hours from the time the
physician first receives the result.
NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to require that
diagnostic test results be reported to the patient upon whom the
tests were conducted by a treating physician within twenty-four
hours of the time the physician receives the result.
Strike-throughs indicate language that would be stricken
from the present law, and underscoring indicates new language
that would be added.
Section one-a is new; therefore, strike-throughs and
underscoring have been omitted.