(1) The West Virginia Legislature finds that the rising cost of health care and services provided by health care facilities are matters of vital concern to the people of this state and have a direct relationship to the ability of the people to obtain necessary health care.
(2) The citizens of this state have an inherent right to receive and have available to them health care programs and services which are capable of meeting individual needs.
(3) Such services should be available to all citizens in all regions of this state.
(4) The furnishing of health care services is an essential public service.
(5) The public has a right to know the financial position of facilities and related organizations.
It is the purpose of this article to provide that the facilities and organizations covered herein shall make a public disclosure of their financial position and to bring about a review as to the reasonableness of the costs of health care services.
(1) "Annual report" means an annual financial report for the covered facility's or related organization's fiscal year prepared by an accountant or the covered facility's or related organization's Auditor.
(2) "Board" means the West Virginia Health Care Authority.
(3) "Covered facility" means any hospital, skilled nursing facility, kidney disease treatment center, including a free-standing hemodialysis unit; intermediate care facility; ambulatory health care facility; ambulatory surgical facility; home health agency; hospice agency; rehabilitation facility; health maintenance organization; or community mental health or intellectual disability facility, whether under public or private ownership or as a profit or nonprofit organization and whether or not licensed or required to be licensed, in whole or in part, by the state: Provided, That nonprofit, community-based primary care centers providing primary care services without regard to ability to pay which provide the board with a year-end audited financial statement prepared in accordance with generally accepted auditing standards and with governmental auditing standards issued by the Comptroller General of the United States shall be deemed to have complied with the disclosure requirements of this section.
(4) "Related organization" means an organization, whether publicly owned, nonprofit, tax-exempt or for profit, related to a covered facility through common membership, governing bodies, trustees, officers, stock ownership, family members, partners or limited partners, including, but not limited to, subsidiaries, foundations, related corporations and joint ventures. For the purposes of this subdivision "family members" shall mean brothers and sisters whether by the whole or half blood, spouse, ancestors and lineal descendants.
(5) "Rates" means all rates, fees or charges imposed by any covered facility for health care services.
(6) "Records" includes accounts, books, charts, contracts, documents, files, maps, papers, profiles, reports, annual and otherwise, schedules and any other fiscal data, however recorded or stored.
(a) In addition to the powers granted to the board elsewhere in this article, the board shall have the powers as indicated by this section and it shall be its duty to:
(1) Promulgate rules and regulations in accordance with the provisions of article three, chapter twenty-nine-a of this code, to implement and make effective the powers, duties and responsibilities contained in the provisions of this article.
(2) Require the filing of fiscal information by covered facilities and related organizations relating to any matter affecting the cost of health care services in this state.
(3) Exercise, subject to the limitations and restrictions herein imposed, all other powers which are reasonably necessary or essential to carry out the expressed purposes of this article.
(4) Require the filing of copies of all tax returns required by federal and state law to be filed by covered facilities and related organizations.
(b) The board shall also investigate and recommend to the Legislature whether other health care providers should be made subject to the provisions of this article.
(c) The board shall, not later than December thirty-first of each year, prepare and transmit to the governor and to the clerks of both houses of the Legislature a report containing the material and data as required by section four of this article, based upon the most recent data available.
The board shall, no later than the first day of July, one thousand nine hundred ninety-two, prepare and transmit to the governor and to the clerks of both houses of the Legislature a special report containing the material and data collected on related organizations. The report shall further explain the effect of the financial activities of the related organizations as represented by the collected data and its relationship to the rate setting powers of the board specified in section nineteen, article twenty-nine-b of this chapter.
(a) Every covered facility and related organization defined in this article, within one hundred twenty days after the end of each of their fiscal years, unless an extension be granted by the board for good cause shown, shall be required to file with the board and publish, as a Class I legal advertisement, pursuant to section two, article three, chapter fifty-nine of the code of West Virginia, in a qualified newspaper published within the county within which such covered facility or related organization is located, an annual report prepared by the covered facility's or related organization's auditor or an independent accountant.
Such report shall contain a complete statement of the following:
(1) Assets and liabilities;
(2) Income and expenses;
(3) Profit or loss for the period reported;
(4) A statement of ownership for persons owning more than five percent of the capital stock outstanding and the dividends paid thereon, if any, and to whom paid for the period reported unless the covered facility or related organization be duly registered on the New York stock exchange, American stock exchange, any regional stock exchange, or its stock traded actively over the counter. Such statement shall further contain a disclosure of ownership by any parent company or subsidiary, if applicable.
Such annual report shall also include a prominent notice that the details concerning the contents of the advertisement, together with the other reports, statements and schedules required to be filed with the board by the provisions of this section, shall be available for public inspection and copying at the board's office.
(b) Every covered facility and related organization shall also file with the board the following statements, schedules or reports in such form and at such intervals as may be specified by the board, but at least annually:
(1) A statement of services available and services rendered;
(2) A statement of the total financial needs of such covered facility or related organization and the resources available or expected to become available to meet such needs;
(3) A complete schedule of such covered facility's or related organization's then current rates with costs allocated to each category of costs, in accordance with the rules and regulations as promulgated by the board pursuant to section three hereof;
(4) A copy of such reports made or filed with the federal health care financing administration, or its successor, as the board may deem necessary or useful to accomplish the purposes of this article;
(5) A statement of all charges, fees or salaries for goods or services rendered to the covered facility or related organization for the period reported which shall exceed in total the sum of fifty-five thousand dollars and a statement of all charges, fees or other sums collected by the covered facility or related organization for or on the account of any person, firm, partnership, corporation or other entity, however structured, which shall exceed in total the sum of fifty-five thousand dollars during the period reported;
(6) Such other reports of the costs incurred in rendering services as the board may prescribe. The board may require the certification of specified financial reports by the covered facility's or related organization's auditor or independent accountant; and
(7) A copy of all tax returns required to be filed by federal and state law.
(c) Notwithstanding any provision to the contrary herein, any data or material that is furnished to the board pursuant to the provisions of subdivision (4), subsection (b) of this section need not be duplicated by any other requirements of this section requiring the filing of data and material.
(d) No report, statement, schedule or other filing required or permitted to be filed hereunder shall contain any medical orindividual information personally identifiable to a patient or a consumer of health services, whether directly or indirectly. All such reports, statements and schedules filed with the board under this section shall be open to public inspection and shall be available for examination during regular hours. Copies of such reports shall be made available to the public upon request and the board may establish fees reasonably calculated to reimburse the board for its actual costs in making copies of such reports: Provided, That all tax returns filed pursuant to this article shall be confidential and it shall be unlawful for the board or any member of its staff to divulge or make known in any manner the tax return, or any part thereof, of any covered facility or related organization.
(e) Whenever further fiscal information is deemed necessary to verify the accuracy of any information set forth in any statement, schedule or report filed by a covered facility or related organization under the provisions of this article, the board shall have the authority to require the production of any records necessary to verify such information.
(f) From time to time, the board shall engage in or carry out analyses and studies relating to health care costs, the financial status of any covered facility or related organization or any other appropriate related matters, and make determinations of whether, in its opinion, the rates charged by a covered facility are economically justified.
Whenever it appears that any covered facility or related organization, required to file or publish such reports, as provided in this article, has failed to file or publish such reports, the attorney general, upon the request of the board, may apply in the name of the state to, and the circuit court of the county in which such covered facility or related organization is located shall have jurisdiction for the granting of a mandatory injunction to compel compliance with the provisions of this article.
Every covered facility and related organization failing to make and transmit to the board any of the reports required by law or failing to publish or distribute the reports as so required, shall forthwith be notified by the board and, if such failure continues for ten days after receipt of said notice, such delinquent facility or organization shall be subject to a penalty of one thousand dollars for each day thereafter that such failure continues, such penalty to be recovered by the board through the attorney general in a civil action and paid into the state treasury to the account of the general fund. Review of any final judgment or order of the circuit court shall be by appeal to the West Virginia supreme court of appeals.
(b) Any covered facility and related organization exempt under this section from the audit requirements and obligations imposed upon local government offices by article nine, chapter six of this code shall file a copy of its audited financial statements with the State Auditor annually, within a reasonable period of time following receipt of the audited financial statements by the covered facility and related organization.
Note: WV Code updated with legislation passed through the 2014 1st Special Session
The WV 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.