(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.
Note: WV Code updated with legislation passed through the 2016 Regular Session
The West Virginia Code Online is an unofficial copy of the annotated WV Code, provided as a convenience. It has NOT been edited for publication, and is not in any way official or authoritative.