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Chapter 16     Entire Code
‹ Chapter 15  |  Chapter 17 › Printer Friendly Versions
Chapter 16  |  Article 16 - 39  |  Section 5

1 - STATE PUBLIC HEALTH SYSTEM

1A - UNIFORM CREDENTIALING FOR HEAL

1B - SKILLED NURSING FACILITIES FOR

2 - LOCAL BOARDS OF HEALTH

2A - ALTERNATIVE METHOD OF ORGANIZI

2B - FAMILY PLANNING AND CHILD SPAC

2C - HOME HEALTH SERVICES

2D - CERTIFICATE OF NEED

2E - BIRTHING CENTERS

2F - PARENTAL NOTIFICATION OF ABORT

2G - SPECIAL SUPPLEMENTARY FOOD PRO

2H - PRIMARY CARE SUPPORT PROGRAM

2I - WOMEN'S RIGHT TO KNOW ACT

2J - PREVENTIVE CARE PILOT PROGRAM

2K - PROGRAMS OF ALL-INCLUSIVE CARE

3 - PREVENTION AND CONTROL OF COMMU

3A - REPOSITORY OF INFORMATION ON M

3B - PERTUSSIS

3C - AIDS-RELATED MEDICAL TESTING A

3D - TUBERCULOSIS TESTING, CONTROL,

4 - SEXUALLY TRANSMITTED DISEASES

4A - PRENATAL EXAMINATION

4B - AUTOPSIES ON BODIES OF DECEASE

4C - EMERGENCY MEDICAL SERVICES ACT

4D - AUTOMATED EXTERNAL DEFIBRILLAT

4E - UNIFORM MATERNAL SCREENING ACT

5 - VITAL STATISTICS

5A - CANCER CONTROL

5B - HOSPITALS AND SIMILAR INSTITUT

5C - NURSING HOMES

5D - ASSISTED LIVING RESIDENCES

5E - REGISTRATION AND INSPECTION OF

5F - HEALTH CARE FINANCIAL DISCLOSU

5G - OPEN HOSPITAL PROCEEDINGS

5H - CHRONIC PAIN CLINIC LICENSING

5I - HOSPICE LICENSURE ACT

5J - CLINICAL LABORATORIES QUALITY

5K - EARLY INTERVENTION SERVICES FO

5L - LONG-TERM CARE OMBUDSMAN PROGR

5M - OSTEOPOROSIS PREVENTION EDUCAT

5N - RESIDENTIAL CARE COMMUNITIES

5O - MEDICATION ADMINISTRATION BY U

5P - SENIOR SERVICES

5Q - THE JAMES TIGER MORTON CATASTR

5R - THE ALZHEIMER'S SPECIAL CARE S

5S - OLDER WEST VIRGINIANS ACT

5T - CARE HOME ADVISORY BOARD

5U - ARTHRITIS PREVENTION EDUCATION

5V - EMERGENCY MEDICAL SERVICES RET

5W - WEST VIRGINIA OFFICIAL PRESCRI

6 - HOTELS AND RESTAURANTS

7 - PURE FOOD AND DRUGS

8 - ELECTROLOGISTS

8A - NARCOTIC DRUGS

8B - DANGEROUS DRUGS ACT

9 - OFFENSES GENERALLY

9A - TOBACCO USAGE RESTRICTIONS

9B - IMPLEMENTING TOBACCO MASTER SE

9C - STATE TOBACCO GROWERS' SETTLEM

9D - ENFORCEMENT OF STATUTES IMPLEM

9E - DELIVERY SALES OF TOBACCO

9F - COUNTERFEIT CIGARETTES

10 - UNIFORM DETERMINATION OF DEAT

11 - SEXUAL STERILIZATION

12 - SANITARY DISTRICTS FOR SEWAGE

13 - SEWAGE WORKS AND STORMWATER W

13A - PUBLIC SERVICE DISTRICTS

13B - COMMUNITY IMPROVEMENT ACT

13C - DRINKING WATER TREATMENT REV

13D - REGIONAL WATER AND WASTEWATE

13E - COMMUNITY ENHANCEMENT ACT

14 - BARBERS AND COSMETOLOGISTS

15 - STATE HOUSING LAW

16 - HOUSING COOPERATION LAW

17 - NATIONAL DEFENSE HOUSING

18 - SLUM CLEARANCE

19 - ANATOMICAL GIFT ACT

1C - HEALTH CARE PROVIDER TRANSPAR

20 - AIR POLLUTION CONTROL

21 - BLOOD DONATIONS

22 - DETECTION AND CONTROL OF PHEN

22A - TESTING OF NEWBORN INFANTS F

22B - BIRTH SCORE PROGRAM

23 - TRANSFUSION OF BLOOD; TRANSPL

24 - STATE HEMOPHILIA PROGRAM

25 - DETECTION OF TUBERCULOSIS, HI

26 - WEST VIRGINIA SOLID WASTE MAN

27 - STORAGE AND DISPOSAL OF RADIO

27A - BAN ON CONSTRUCTION OF NUCLE

28 - ASSISTANCE TO KOREAN AND VIET

29 - HEALTH CARE RECORDS

29A - WEST VIRGINIA HOSPITAL FINAN

29B - HEALTH CARE AUTHORITY

29C - INDIGENT CARE

29D - STATE HEALTH CARE

29E - LEGISLATIVE OVERSIGHT COMMIS

29F - UNINSURED AND UNDERINSURED P

29G - WEST VIRGINIA HEALTH INFORMA

29H - INTERAGENCY HEALTH COUNCIL

29I - WEST VIRGINIA HEALTH CARE AU

30 - WEST VIRGINIA HEALTH CARE DEC

30A - MEDICAL POWER OF ATTORNEY

30B - HEALTH CARE SURROGATE ACT

30C - DO NOT RESUSCITATE ACT

31 - COMMUNITY RIGHT TO KNOW

32. ASBESTOS ABATEMENT

33 - BREAST AND CERVICAL CANCER PR

34 - LICENSURE OF RADON MITIGATORS

35 - LEAD ABATEMENT

36 - NEEDLESTICK INJURY PREVENTION

37 - BODY PIERCING STUDIO BUSINESS

38 - TATTOO STUDIO BUSINESS

39 - PATIENT SAFETY ACT
    16 - 39 - 1
    16 - 39 - 2
    16 - 39 - 3
    16 - 39 - 4
    16 - 39 - 5
    16 - 39 - 6
    16 - 39 - 7

40 - STATEWIDE BIRTH DEFECTS INFOR

41 - ORAL HEALTH IMPROVEMENT ACT

42 - COMPREHENSIVE BEHAVIORAL HEAL

43 - ENGINE COOLANT AND ANTIFREEZE

44 - THE PULSE OXIMETRY NEWBORN TE

45 - TANNING FACILITIES

WVC 16- CHAPTER 16. PUBLIC HEALTH.
WVC 16 - 39 - ARTICLE 39. PATIENT SAFETY ACT.

WVC 16 - 39 - 1 §16-39-1. Short title.
This article may be cited as the "Patient Safety Act of 2001."

WVC 16 - 39 - 2 §16-39-2. Legislative findings and purpose.
(a) The Legislature finds that:

(1) Patients receiving medical care in this state need stable and consistent care from those providing health care services at every level;

(2) Dedicated health care workers are instrumental in providing quality patient care services and ensuring that the patient's best interests are at all times protected;

(3) During the course of caring for their patients, many health care workers often observe instances of waste or wrongdoing that detrimentally affect both the patients and the health care facility;

(4) Health care workers who observe such matters are often reluctant to report the waste or wrongdoing to the administrator of the health care facility or other appropriate authority for fear of retaliatory or discriminatory treatment through termination, demotion, reduction of time, wages or benefits or other such actions; and

(5) The quality of available health care will suffer in this state if dedicated health care workers are discouraged from reporting instances of waste or wrongdoing that affect the quality of health care delivery in this state.

(b) Consequently, the Legislature intends by enacting this article to protect patients by providing protections for those health care workers with whom the patient has the most direct contact.

WVC 16 - 39 - 3 §16-39-3. Definitions.
For purposes of this article:

(1) "Appropriate authority" means a federal, state, county or municipal government body, agency or organization having jurisdiction over criminal law enforcement, regulatory violations, professional conduct or ethics, or waste or any member, officer, agent, representative or supervisory employee thereof.

(2) "Commissioner" means the commissioner of the division of health;

(3) "Direct patient care" means health care that provides for the physical, diagnostic, emotional or rehabilitational needs of a patient or health care that involves examination, treatment or preparation for diagnostic tests or procedures.

(4) "Discrimination or retaliation" includes any threat, intimidation, discharge or any adverse change in a health care worker's position, location, compensation, benefits, privileges or terms or conditions of employment that occurs as a result of a health care worker engaging in any action protected by this article.

(5) "Good faith report" means a report of conduct defined in this article as wrongdoing or waste that is made without malice or consideration of personal benefit and which the person making the report has reasonable cause to believe is true.

(6) "Health care entity" includes a health care facility, such as a hospital, clinic, nursing facility or other provider of health care services.

(7) "Health care worker" means a person who provides direct patient care to patients of a health care entity and who is an employee of the health care entity, a subcontractor or independent contractor for the health care entity, or an employee of such subcontractor or independent contractor. The term includes, but is not limited to, a nurse, nurse's aide, laboratory technician, physician, intern, resident, physician assistant, physical therapist or other such person who provides direct patient care.

(8) "Waste" means the conduct, act or omission by a health care entity that results in substantial abuse, misuse, destruction or loss of funds, resources or property belonging to a patient, a health care entity or any federal or state program.

(9) "Wrongdoing" means a violation of any law, rule, regulation or generally recognized professional or clinical standard that relates to care, services or conditions and which potentially endangers one or more patients or workers or the public.

WVC 16 - 39 - 4 §16-39-4. Prohibition against discrimination or retaliation.
(a) No person may retaliate or discriminate in any manner against any health care worker because the worker, or any person acting on behalf of the worker:

(1) Makes a good faith report, or is about to report, verbally or in writing, to the health care entity or appropriate authority an instance of wrongdoing or waste.

(2) Advocated on behalf of a patient or patients with respect to the care, services or conditions of a health care entity;

(3) Initiated, cooperated or otherwise participated in any investigation or proceeding of any governmental entity relating to the care, services or conditions of a health care entity.

(b) A health care worker with respect to the conduct described is acting in good faith if the health care worker reasonably believes:

(1) That the information is true; and

(2) Constitutes waste or wrongdoing as defined in section three of this article.

WVC 16 - 39 - 5 §16-39-5. Confidentiality of complaints to government agencies.
The identity of a health care worker who complains in good faith to a government agency or department about the quality of care, services or conditions of a health care entity or any waste or wrongdoing by the health care entity shall remain confidential and may not be disclosed by any person except upon the knowing written consent of the health care worker and except in the case in which there is imminent danger to health or public safety or an imminent violation of criminal law.

WVC 16 - 39 - 6 §16-39-6. Enforcement.
(a) Any health care worker who believes that he or she has been retaliated or discriminated against in violation of section four of this article may file a civil action in any court of competent jurisdiction against the health care entity and the person believed to have violated section four of this article.

(b) A court, in rendering a judgment for a complainant in an action brought under this article, shall order, as the court considers appropriate, reinstatement of the health care worker, the payment of back wages, full reinstatement of fringe benefits and seniority rights, actual damages or any combination of these remedies. A court may also award the complainant, all or a portion of the costs of litigation, including reasonable attorneys fees and witness fees, if the court determines that the award is appropriate.

(c) An action may be brought under this subsection not later than two years after the date of the last event constituting the alleged violation for which the action is brought.

WVC 16 - 39 - 7 §16-39-7. Notice.
Each health care entity shall post and keep posted, in conspicuous places on the premises of the health care entity where notices to employees and applicants for employment are customarily posted, a notice, to be prepared or approved by the commissioner, setting forth excerpts from, or summaries of, the pertinent provisions of this article and information pertaining to the filing of a charge under section four of this article.

Note: WV Code updated with legislation passed through the 2014 1st Special Session
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