Connecticut Seal

General Assembly

 

Raised Bill No. 186

February Session, 2012

 

LCO No. 1072

 

*01072_______PH_*

 

Referred to Committee on Public Health

 

Introduced by:

 

(PH)

 

AN ACT CONCERNING THE LICENSING, INVESTIGATION AND DISCIPLINARY PROCESSES FOR PHYSICIANS AND NURSES.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Assembly convened:

Section 1. Subsections (a) to (c), inclusive, of section 20-8a of the general statutes are repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective from passage):

(a) There shall be within the Department of Public Health a Connecticut Medical Examining Board. [Said] On and after October 1, 2012, said board shall consist of [fifteen] twenty-one members, fourteen of whom are physicians and seven of whom are public members, all of whom are appointed by the Governor, subject to the provisions of section 4-9a, in the manner prescribed for department heads in section 4-7, as follows: [Five] Three physicians [practicing in the state; one physician who shall be a full-time member of the faculty of The University of Connecticut School of Medicine; one physician who shall be a full-time chief of staff in a general-care hospital in the state;] of any specialty; three physicians who shall be specialists in internal medicine; one physician who shall be a psychiatrist; one physician who shall be a surgeon; one physician who shall be an obstetrician-gynecologist; one physician who shall be a pediatrician; one physician who shall be an emergency medical physician; one physician who shall be a supervising physician for one or more physician assistants; one physician who shall be a graduate of a medical education program accredited by the American Osteopathic Association; one physician assistant licensed pursuant to section 20-12b; [and practicing in this state; and five] and seven public members. No professional member of said board shall be an elected or appointed officer of a professional society or association relating to such member's profession at the time of appointment to the board or have been such an officer during the year immediately preceding appointment or serve for more than two consecutive terms. Professional members shall be practitioners in good professional standing and residents of this state.

(b) All vacancies shall be filled by the Governor in the manner prescribed for department heads in section 4-7. Successors and appointments to fill a vacancy shall fulfill the same qualifications as the member succeeded or replaced. In addition to the requirements in sections 4-9a and 19a-8, no person whose spouse, parent, brother, sister, child or spouse of a child is a physician, as defined in section 20-13a, or a physician assistant, as defined in section 20-12a, shall be appointed as a public member.

(c) The Commissioner of Public Health shall establish a list of [twenty-four] thirty-six persons who may serve as members of medical hearing panels established pursuant to subsection (g) of this section. Persons appointed to the list shall serve as members of the medical hearing panels and provide the same services as members of the Connecticut Medical Examining Board. Members from the list serving on such panels shall not be voting members of the Connecticut Medical Examining Board. The list shall consist of [twenty-four] thirty-six members appointed by the commissioner, [at least eight] twenty-four of whom shall be physicians, as defined in section 20-13a, with at least two physicians who shall be specialists in internal medicine; one physician who shall be a psychiatrist; one physician who shall be a psychiatrist specializing in addiction medicine; one physician who shall be an obstetrician-gynecologist; one physician who shall be a pediatrician; one physician who shall be an emergency medicine physician; one physician who shall be a surgeon; one physician who shall be an anesthesiologist; and one [of such physicians being] physician who shall be a graduate of a medical education program accredited by the American Osteopathic Association, [at least one of whom] one who shall be a physician assistant licensed pursuant to section 20-12b, and [nine of whom] twelve who shall be members of the public. No professional member of the list shall be an elected or appointed officer of a professional society or association relating to such member's profession at the time of appointment to the list or have been such an officer during the year immediately preceding such appointment to the list. A licensed professional appointed to the list shall be a practitioner in good professional standing and a resident of this state. All vacancies shall be filled by the commissioner. Successors and professional members appointed to fill a vacancy on the list shall possess the same qualifications as those required of the member succeeded or replaced. No person whose spouse, parent, brother, sister, child or spouse of a child is a physician, as defined in section 20-13a, or a physician assistant, as defined in section 20-12a, shall be appointed to the list as a member of the public. Each person appointed to the list shall serve without compensation at the pleasure of the commissioner. Each medical hearing panel shall consist of three members, one of whom shall be a member of the Connecticut Medical Examining Board, one of whom shall be a physician or physician assistant, as appropriate, and one of whom shall be a public member. The physician and public member may be a member of the board or a member from the list established pursuant to this subsection.

Sec. 2. Subsection (b) of section 20-10b of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective from passage):

(b) Except as otherwise provided in subsections (d), (e) and (f) of this section, for registration periods beginning on and after October 1, [2007] 2012, a licensee applying for license renewal shall earn a minimum of [fifty] sixty contact hours of continuing medical education within the preceding twenty-four-month period. Such continuing medical education shall (1) be in an area of the physician's practice; (2) reflect the professional needs of the licensee in order to meet the health care needs of the public; and (3) include at least one contact hour of training or education in each of the following topics: (A) Infectious diseases, including, but not limited to, acquired immune deficiency syndrome and human immunodeficiency virus, (B) risk management, (C) sexual assault, (D) domestic violence, and (E) for registration periods beginning on and after October 1, 2010, cultural competency. For purposes of this section, qualifying continuing medical education activities include, but are not limited to, courses offered or approved by the American Medical Association, American Osteopathic Medical Association, Connecticut Hospital Association, Connecticut State Medical Society, county medical societies or equivalent organizations in another jurisdiction, educational offerings sponsored by a hospital or other health care institution or courses offered by a regionally accredited academic institution or a state or local health department. The commissioner may grant a waiver for not more than ten contact hours of continuing medical education for a physician who: (1) Engages in activities related to the physician's service as a member of the Connecticut Medical Examining Board, established pursuant to section 20-8a, as amended by this act; (2) engages in activities related to the physician's service as a member of a medical hearing panel, pursuant to section 20-8a, as amended by this act; or (3) assists the department with its duties to boards and commissions as described in section 19a-14.

Sec. 3. Subsection (g) of section 19a-88 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2012):

(g) [On or before July 1, 2008, the] The Department of Public Health shall [establish and implement] administer a secure on-line license renewal system for persons holding a license to practice medicine or surgery under chapter 370, dentistry under chapter 379 or nursing under chapter 378. The department shall [allow] require any such person [who renews] to renew his or her license using the on-line license renewal system and to pay his or her professional service fees on-line by means of a credit card or electronic transfer of funds from a bank or credit union account and may charge such person a service fee not to exceed five dollars for any such on-line payment made by credit card or electronic funds transfer. [On or before January 1, 2009, the department shall submit, in accordance with section 11-4a, a report on the feasibility and implications of the implementation of a biennial license renewal system for persons holding a license to practice nursing under chapter 378 to the joint standing committee of the General Assembly having cognizance of matters relating to public health.]

Sec. 4. Subsection (a) of section 20-88 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective from passage):

(a) The Connecticut State Board of Examiners for Nursing shall consist of twelve members who are residents of the state to be appointed by the Governor subject to the provisions of section 4-9a. The Governor shall appoint [two members] one member who shall be [graduates] a graduate of an approved school for licensed practical nursing; [five] six members who shall be registered nurses, [three] two of whom may practice in any area, one of whom shall practice in the area of acute care, one of whom shall practice in the area of long-term care, one of whom shall, at the time of appointment, be connected with an institution affording opportunities for the education of registered nurses, [and at least two of whom shall hold master's degrees in nursing from a recognized college or university] and one of whom shall, [be] at the time of appointment, be an instructor in an approved school for licensed practical nurses; one member who shall be an advanced practice registered nurse; and four members who shall be public members, at least one of whom shall be a health care professional, other than a nurse, who has training and experience in mental health and addiction services. Members of said board shall be residents of this state and professional members shall maintain good professional standing. No member of said board shall be an elected or appointed officer of any professional association of nurses or have been such an officer during the year immediately preceding his appointment. No member shall serve more than two full consecutive terms which commence after July 1, 1980. Any vacancy shall be filled by the Governor for the unexpired portion of the term.

This act shall take effect as follows and shall amend the following sections:

Section 1

from passage

20-8a(a) to (c)

Sec. 2

from passage

20-10b(b)

Sec. 3

October 1, 2012

19a-88(g)

Sec. 4

from passage

20-88(a)

Statement of Purpose:

To expand the membership of the Connecticut Medical Examining Board; increase the number of continuing medical education credits for physicians; require renewal of physician, nurse and dentist licenses using the Department of Public Health's on-line license renewal system; and change the membership of the Connecticut State Board of Examiners for Nursing.

[Proposed deletions are enclosed in brackets. Proposed additions are indicated by underline, except that when the entire text of a bill or resolution or a section of a bill or resolution is new, it is not underlined.]