Bill Text: NJ S3521 | 2018-2019 | Regular Session | Introduced


Bill Title: Requires certain health care practitioners to disclose criminal and disciplinary history to patients.

Spectrum: Partisan Bill (Republican 3-0)

Status: (Introduced) 2019-03-04 - Introduced in the Senate, Referred to Senate Health, Human Services and Senior Citizens Committee [S3521 Detail]

Download: New_Jersey-2018-S3521-Introduced.html

SENATE, No. 3521

STATE OF NEW JERSEY

218th LEGISLATURE

 

INTRODUCED MARCH 4, 2019

 


 

Sponsored by:

Senator  ROBERT W. SINGER

District 30 (Monmouth and Ocean)

Senator  JAMES W. HOLZAPFEL

District 10 (Ocean)

 

 

 

 

SYNOPSIS

     Requires certain health care practitioners to disclose criminal and disciplinary history to patients.

 

CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT

     As introduced.

 


An Act concerning health care disclosures and supplementing Title 45 of the Revised Statutes.

 

     Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:

 

      1.   a.   Except as provided in subsection d. of this section, each podiatrist licensed by the State Board of Medical Examiners pursuant to R.S.45:5-1 et seq. shall provide a written disclosure to each patient, or to the patient's health care representative or, in the case of a patient who is an unemancipated minor, to the patient's parent or guardian, concerning:

     (1)   any crimes of the first, second, third, or fourth degree for which the podiatrist has been convicted, when the crime directly involved harm to a patient.  For the purposes of this paragraph, a person shall be deemed to be convicted of a crime if the individual pleaded guilty or was found or adjudged guilty by a court of competent jurisdiction.  The disclosure shall not include any convictions that have been expunged;

     (2)   any final disciplinary actions entered against the podiatrist by the board involving drug or alcohol abuse directly involving harm to a patient or that resulted in impairment such that the podiatrist was found to be unable to engage in the safe practice of podiatric medicine;

     (3)   any final disciplinary actions entered against the podiatrist by the board involving any act of sexual abuse, misconduct, or relations with a patient; and

     (4)   any final disciplinary actions entered against the podiatrist by the board involving inappropriate prescribing that resulted in harm to a patient.

      b.   A podiatrist shall provide the written disclosure required pursuant to subsection a. of this section prior to a patient's first visit with the podiatrist following entry of a criminal conviction or final disciplinary action for which disclosure is required pursuant to subsection a. of this section.  The written disclosure shall include:

     (1)   a description of the offense;

     (2)   the date of the offense;

     (3)   a description of the penalties imposed for the offense;

     (4)   whether the conviction or final disciplinary action is under appeal;

     (5)   whether the podiatrist is on probation or is subject to practice restrictions, and the nature of any such restrictions;

     (6)   information concerning how the patient can access the podiatrist's profile maintained pursuant to P.L.2003, c.96 (C.45:9-22.21 et seq.); and

     (7)   any other information as may be required by the board or by the Division of Consumer Affairs in the Department of Law and Public Safety. 

      c.    A podiatrist who is required to provide a written disclosure to a patient pursuant to this section shall, prior to providing care, treatment, or services to the patient, be required to obtain from the patient, or from the patient's health care representative or, in the case of a patient who is an unemancipated minor, the patient's parent or guardian, a signed attestation that the patient, representative, parent, or guardian, as applicable, has received, and has had the opportunity to review, the written disclosure, and that the patient, representative, parent, or guardian consents to the patient receiving care, treatment, and services.  The consent provided pursuant to this subsection shall constitute a general consent to be seen by the podiatrist, and shall not be deemed to constitute consent to any given service or procedure.

      d.   A podiatrist who would otherwise be required to provide a written disclosure pursuant to this section shall not be required to provide the disclosure if:

     (1)   the patient requires acute treatment, care, or services but is unconscious, unresponsive, or lacks the capacity to provide consent pursuant to subsection c. of this section, and no health care representative is available to provide consent on the patient's behalf;

     (2)   the patient presents at an emergency department or urgent care facility or the visit is unscheduled, including consultations in an inpatient facility; or

     (3)   the podiatrist does not provide direct care, treatment, or services to the patient.

      e.    A podiatrist who violates the provisions of this section shall be liable to a civil penalty of up to $1,000 for a first violation, and a civil penalty of up to $2,500 for a second or subsequent violation. The civil penalty may be sued for and collected by the board in a summary proceeding pursuant to the "Penalty Enforcement Law of 1999," P.L.1999, c.274 (C.2A:58-10 et seq.).

 

      2.   a.   Except as provided in subsection d. of this section, each dentist licensed to practice by the New Jersey State Board of Dentistry pursuant to R.S.45:6-1 et seq. shall provide a written disclosure to each patient, or to the patient's health care representative or, in the case of a patient who is an unemancipated minor, to the patient's parent or guardian, concerning:

     (1)   any crimes of the first, second, third, or fourth degree for which the dentist has been convicted, when the crime directly involved harm to a patient.  For the purposes of this paragraph, a person shall be deemed to be convicted of a crime if the individual pleaded guilty or was found or adjudged guilty by a court of competent jurisdiction.  The disclosure shall not include any convictions that have been expunged;

     (2)   any final disciplinary actions entered against the dentist by the board involving drug or alcohol abuse directly involving harm to a patient or that resulted in impairment such that the dentist was found to be unable to engage in the safe practice of dentistry;

     (3)   any final disciplinary actions entered against the dentist by the board involving any act of sexual abuse, misconduct, or relations with a patient; and

     (4)   any final disciplinary actions entered against the dentist by the board involving inappropriate prescribing that resulted in harm to a patient.

      b.   A dentist shall provide the written disclosure required pursuant to subsection a. of this section prior to a patient's first visit with the dentist following entry of a criminal conviction or final disciplinary action for which disclosure is required pursuant to subsection a. of this section.  The written disclosure shall include:

     (1)   a description of the offense;

     (2)   the date of the offense;

     (3)   a description of the penalties imposed for the offense;

     (4)   whether the conviction or final disciplinary action is under appeal;

     (5)   whether the dentist is on probation or is subject to practice restrictions, and the nature of any such restrictions; and

     (6)   any other information as may be required by the board or by the Division of Consumer Affairs in the Department of Law and Public Safety.  

      c.    A dentist who is required to provide a written disclosure to a patient pursuant to this section shall, prior to providing care, treatment, or services to the patient, be required to obtain from the patient, or from the patient's health care representative or, in the case of a patient who is an unemancipated minor, the patient's parent or guardian, a signed attestation that the patient, representative, parent, or guardian, as applicable, has received, and has had the opportunity to review, the written disclosure, and that the patient, representative, parent, or guardian consents to the patient receiving care, treatment, and services.  The consent provided pursuant to this subsection shall constitute a general consent to be seen by the dentist, and shall not be deemed to constitute consent to any given service or procedure.

      d.   A dentist who would otherwise be required to provide a written disclosure pursuant to this section shall not be required to provide the disclosure if:

     (1)   the patient requires acute treatment, care, or services but is unconscious, unresponsive, or lacks the capacity to provide consent pursuant to subsection c. of this section, and no health care representative is available to provide consent on the patient's behalf;

     (2)   the patient presents at an emergency department or urgent care facility or the visit is unscheduled, including consultations in an inpatient facility; or

     (3)   the dentist does not provide direct care, treatment, or services to the patient.

      e.    A dentist who violates the provisions of this section shall be liable to a civil penalty of up to $1,000 for a first violation, and a civil penalty of up to $2,500 for a second or subsequent violation. The civil penalty may be sued for and collected by the board in a summary proceeding pursuant to the "Penalty Enforcement Law of 1999," P.L.1999, c.274 (C.2A:58-10 et seq.). 

 

      3.   a.   Except as provided in subsection d. of this section, each physician licensed by the State Board of Medical Examiners pursuant to R.S.45:9-1 et seq. shall provide a written disclosure to each patient, or to the patient's health care representative or, in the case of a patient who is an unemancipated minor, to the patient's parent or guardian, concerning:

     (1)   any crimes of the first, second, third, or fourth degree for which the physician has been convicted, when the crime directly involved harm to a patient.  For the purposes of this paragraph, a person shall be deemed to be convicted of a crime if the individual pleaded guilty or was found or adjudged guilty by a court of competent jurisdiction.  The disclosure shall not include any convictions that have been expunged;

     (2)   any final disciplinary actions entered against the physician by the board involving drug or alcohol abuse directly involving harm to a patient or that resulted in impairment such that the physician was found to be unable to engage in the safe practice of medicine;

     (3)   any final disciplinary actions entered against the physician by the board involving any act of sexual abuse, misconduct, or relations with a patient; and

     (4)   any final disciplinary actions entered against the physician by the board involving inappropriate prescribing that resulted in harm to a patient.

      b.   A physician shall provide the written disclosure required pursuant to subsection a. of this section prior to a patient's first visit with the physician following entry of a criminal conviction or final disciplinary action for which disclosure is required pursuant to subsection a. of this section.  The written disclosure shall include:

     (1)   a description of the offense;

     (2)   the date of the offense;

     (3)   a description of the penalties imposed for the offense;

     (4)   whether the conviction or final disciplinary action is under appeal;

     (5)   whether the physician is on probation or is subject to practice restrictions, and the nature of any such restrictions;

     (6)   information concerning how the patient can access the physician's profile maintained pursuant to P.L.2003, c.96 (C.45:9-22.21 et seq.); and

     (7)   any other information as may be required by the board or by the Division of Consumer Affairs in the Department of Law and Public Safety. 

      c.    A physician who is required to provide a written disclosure to a patient pursuant to this section shall, prior to providing care, treatment, or services to the patient, be required to obtain from the patient, or from the patient's health care representative or, in the case of a patient who is an unemancipated minor, the patient's parent or guardian, a signed attestation that the patient, representative, parent, or guardian, as applicable, has received, and has had the opportunity to review, the written disclosure, and that the patient, representative, parent, or guardian consents to the patient receiving care, treatment, and services.  The consent provided pursuant to this subsection shall constitute a general consent to be seen by the physician, and shall not be deemed to constitute consent to any given service or procedure.

      d.   A physician who would otherwise be required to provide a written disclosure pursuant to this section shall not be required to provide the disclosure if:

     (1)   the patient requires acute treatment, care, or services but is unconscious, unresponsive, or lacks the capacity to provide consent pursuant to subsection c. of this section, and no health care representative is available to provide consent on the patient's behalf;

     (2)   the patient presents at an emergency department or urgent care facility or the visit is unscheduled, including consultations in an inpatient facility; or

     (3)   the physician does not provide direct care, treatment, or services to the patient.

      e.    A physician who violates the provisions of this section shall be liable to a civil penalty of up to $1,000 for a first violation, and a civil penalty of up to $2,500 for a second or subsequent violation. The civil penalty may be sued for and collected by the board in a summary proceeding pursuant to the "Penalty Enforcement Law of 1999," P.L.1999, c.274 (C.2A:58-10 et seq.). 

 

      4.   a.   Except as provided in subsection d. of this section, each chiropractor licensed by the State Board of Chiropractic Examiners pursuant to P.L.1989, c.53 (C.45:9-41.17 et seq.) shall provide a written disclosure to each patient, or to the patient's health care representative or, in the case of a patient who is an unemancipated minor, to the patient's parent or guardian, concerning:

     (1)   any crimes of the first, second, third, or fourth degree for which the chiropractor has been convicted, when the crime directly involved harm to a patient.  For the purposes of this paragraph, a person shall be deemed to be convicted of a crime if the individual pleaded guilty or was found or adjudged guilty by a court of competent jurisdiction. The disclosure shall not include any convictions that have been expunged;

     (2)   any final disciplinary actions entered against the chiropractor by the board involving drug or alcohol abuse directly involving harm to a patient or that resulted in impairment such that the chiropractor was found to be unable to engage in the safe practice of chiropractic; and

     (3)   any final disciplinary actions entered against the chiropractor by the board involving any act of sexual abuse, misconduct, or relations with a patient.

      b.   A chiropractor shall provide the written disclosure required pursuant to subsection a. of this section prior to a patient's first visit with the chiropractor following entry of a criminal conviction or final disciplinary action for which disclosure is required pursuant to subsection a. of this section.  The written disclosure shall include:

     (1)   a description of the offense;

     (2)   the date of the offense;

     (3)   a description of the penalties imposed for the offense;

     (4)   whether the conviction or final disciplinary action is under appeal;

     (5)   whether the chiropractor is on probation or is subject to practice restrictions, and the nature of any such restrictions; and

     (6)   any other information as may be required by the board or by the Division of Consumer Affairs in the Department of Law and Public Safety. 

      c.    A chiropractor who is required to provide a written disclosure to a patient pursuant to this section shall, prior to providing care, treatment, or services to the patient, be required to obtain from the patient, or from the patient's health care representative or, in the case of a patient who is an unemancipated minor, the patient's parent or guardian, a signed attestation that the patient, representative, parent, or guardian, as applicable, has received, and has had the opportunity to review, the written disclosure, and that the patient, representative, parent, or guardian consents to the patient receiving care, treatment, and services.  The consent provided pursuant to this subsection shall constitute a general consent to be seen by the chiropractor, and shall not be deemed to constitute consent to any given service or procedure.

      d.   A chiropractor who would otherwise be required to provide a written disclosure pursuant to this section shall not be required to provide the disclosure if the chiropractor does not provide direct care, treatment, or services to the patient.

      e.    A chiropractor who violates the provisions of this section shall be liable to a civil penalty of up to $1,000 for a first violation, and a civil penalty of up to $2,500 for a second or subsequent violation. The civil penalty may be sued for and collected by the board in a summary proceeding pursuant to the "Penalty Enforcement Law of 1999," P.L.1999, c.274 (C.2A:58-10 et seq.). 

      5.   a.   Except as provided in subsection d. of this section, each optometrist licensed by the New Jersey State Board of Optometrists pursuant to R.S.45:12-1 et seq. shall provide a written disclosure to each patient, or to the patient's health care representative or, in the case of a patient who is an unemancipated minor, to the patient's parent or guardian, concerning:

     (1)   any crimes of the first, second, third or fourth degree for which the optometrist has been convicted, when the crime directly involved harm to a patient.  For the purposes of this paragraph, a person shall be deemed to be convicted of a crime if the individual pleaded guilty or was found or adjudged guilty by a court of competent jurisdiction.  The disclosure shall not include any convictions that have been expunged;

     (2)   any final disciplinary actions entered against the optometrist by the board involving drug or alcohol abuse directly involving harm to a patient or that resulted in impairment such that the optometrist was found to be unable to engage in the safe practice of optometry;

     (3)   any final disciplinary actions entered against the optometrist by the board involving any act of sexual abuse, misconduct, or relations with a patient; and

     (4)   any final disciplinary actions entered against the optometrist by the board involving inappropriate prescribing that resulted in harm to a patient.

      b.   An optometrist shall provide the written disclosure required pursuant to subsection a. of this section prior to a patient's first visit with the optometrist following entry of a criminal conviction or final disciplinary action for which disclosure is required pursuant to subsection a. of this section.  The written disclosure shall include:

     (1)   a description of the offense;

     (2)   the date of the offense;

     (3)   a description of the penalties imposed for the offense;

     (4)   whether the conviction or final disciplinary action is under appeal;

     (5)   whether the optometrist is on probation or is subject to practice restrictions, and the nature of any such restrictions;

     (6)   information concerning how the patient can access the optometrist's profile maintained pursuant to P.L.2003, c.96 (C.45:9-22.21 et seq.); and

     (7)   any other information as may be required by the board or by the Division of Consumer Affairs in the Department of Law and Public Safety. 

      c.    An optometrist who is required to provide a written disclosure to a patient pursuant to this section shall, prior to providing care, treatment, or services to the patient, be required to obtain from the patient, or from the patient's health care representative or, in the case of a patient who is an unemancipated minor, the patient's parent or guardian, a signed attestation that the patient, representative, parent, or guardian, as applicable, has received, and has had the opportunity to review, the written disclosure, and that the patient, representative, parent, or guardian consents to the patient receiving care, treatment, and services.  The consent provided pursuant to this subsection shall constitute a general consent to be seen by the optometrist, and shall not be deemed to constitute consent to any given service or procedure.

      d.   An optometrist who would otherwise be required to provide a written disclosure pursuant to this section shall not be required to provide the disclosure if:

     (1)   the patient requires acute treatment, care, or services but is unconscious, unresponsive, or lacks the capacity to provide consent pursuant to subsection c. of this section, and no health care representative is available to provide consent on the patient's behalf;

     (2)   the patient presents at an emergency department or urgent care facility or the visit is unscheduled, including consultations in an inpatient facility; or

     (3)   the optometrist does not provide direct care, treatment, or services to the patient.

      e.    An optometrist who violates the provisions of this section shall be liable to a civil penalty of up to $1,000 for a first violation, and a civil penalty of up to $2,500 for a second or subsequent violation. The civil penalty may be sued for and collected by the board in a summary proceeding pursuant to the "Penalty Enforcement Law of 1999," P.L.1999, c.274 (C.2A:58-10 et seq.). 

 

      6.   The Director of the Division of Consumer Affairs in the Department of Law and Public Safety, the State Board of Medical Examiners, the New Jersey State Board of Dentistry, the State Board of Chiropractic Examiners, and the New Jersey State Board of Optometrists shall adopt rules and regulations, pursuant to the "Administrative Procedure Act," P.L.1968, c.410 (C.52:14B-1 et seq.), as may be necessary to implement the provisions of this act.

 

      7.   This act shall take effect 180 days after the date of enactment.

 

 

STATEMENT

 

     This bill requires physicians, dentists, podiatrists, optometrists, and chiropractors to disclose to patients information concerning certain criminal convictions and final disciplinary actions prior to providing care, treatment, or services to the patient.

     Specifically, practitioners will be required to provide patients, or their health care representatives, parents, or guardians, if appropriate, with a written disclosure concerning:

         any crimes of the first, second, third, or fourth degree for which the practitioner was convicted, when the crime directly involved harm to a patient;

         any final disciplinary actions entered against the practitioner involving drug or alcohol abuse directly involving harm to a patient or that resulted in impairment such that the practitioner was found to be unable to safely engage in professional practice;

         any final disciplinary actions entered against the practitioner involving any act of sexual abuse, misconduct, or relations with a patient; and

         any final disciplinary actions entered against the practitioner involving inappropriate prescribing resulting in harm to a patient.

     Practitioners will be required to provide the written disclosure prior to a patient's first visit with practitioner following entry of a criminal conviction or final disciplinary action for which disclosure is required.  The written disclosure is to include: a description of the offense; the date of the offense; a description of the penalties imposed for the offense; whether the conviction or final disciplinary action is under appeal; whether the practitioner is on probation or is subject to practice restrictions, and the nature of any such restrictions; in the case of physicians, podiatrists, and optometrists, information concerning how the patient can access the practitioner's profile maintained pursuant to P.L.2003, c.96 (C.45:9-22.21 et seq.); and any other information as may be required by the applicable licensing board or by the Division of Consumer Affairs in the Department of Law and Public Safety. 

     The practitioner will be required to obtain from the patient, or from the patient's health care representative or, in the case of a patient who is an unemancipated minor, the patient's parent or guardian, a signed attestation that the patient, representative, parent, or guardian, as applicable, has received, and has had the opportunity to review, the written disclosure, and that the patient, representative, parent, or guardian consents to the patient receiving care, treatment, and services. This consent will constitute a general consent to be seen by the practitioner, and will not constitute consent to any given service or procedure.

     Practitioners otherwise required to provide a written disclosure under the bill will not be required to provide the disclosure in situations in which: the patient requires acute treatment, care, or services but is unconscious, unresponsive, or lacks the capacity to provide consent, and no health care representative is available to provide consent on the patient's behalf; the patient presents at an emergency department or urgent care facility or the visit is unscheduled, including inpatient consultations; or the practitioner does not provide direct care, treatment, or services to the patient.

     A practitioner who violates the requirements of the bill will be liable to a civil penalty of up to $1,000 for a first violation, and a civil penalty of up to $2,500 for a second or subsequent violation.

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