Sec. 20-7a. Billing for clinical laboratory services. Cost of diagnostic tests. Financial disclosures to patients. (a) Any practitioner of the healing arts who agrees with any clinical laboratory, either private or hospital, to make payments to such laboratory for individual tests or test series for patients shall disclose on the bills to patients or third party payors the name of such laboratory, the amount or amounts charged by such laboratory for individual tests or test series and the amount of his procurement or processing charge, if any, for each test or test series. Any person who violates the provisions of this section shall be fined not more than one hundred dollars.
(b) Each practitioner of the healing arts who recommends a test to aid in the diagnosis of a patient’s physical condition shall, to the extent the practitioner is reasonably able, inform the patient of the approximate range of costs of such test.
(c) Each practitioner of the healing arts who (1) has an ownership or investment interest in an entity which provides diagnostic or therapeutic services, or (2) receives compensation or remuneration for referral of such patient to an entity which provides diagnostic or therapeutic services shall disclose such interest to any patient prior to referring such patient to such entity for diagnostic or therapeutic services and provide reasonable referral alternatives. Such information shall be verbally disclosed to each patient or shall be posted in a conspicuous place visible to patients in the practitioner’s office. The posted information shall list the therapeutic and diagnostic services in which the practitioner has an ownership or investment interest and therapeutic and diagnostic services from which the practitioner receives compensation or remuneration for referrals and state that alternate referrals will be made upon request. Therapeutic services include physical therapy, radiation therapy, intravenous therapy and rehabilitation services including physical therapy, occupational therapy or speech pathology or any combination thereof. This subsection shall not apply to in-office ancillary services. As used in this subsection, “ownership or investment interest” shall not include ownership of investment securities purchased by the practitioner on terms available to the general public and which are publicly traded; and “entity which provides diagnostic or therapeutic services” shall include services provided by an entity within a hospital but which is not owned by the hospital. Violation of this subsection shall constitute conduct subject to disciplinary action under subdivision (6) of subsection (a) of section 19a-17.
(P.A. 73-159; P.A. 91-168; P.A. 92-24.)
History: P.A. 91-168 added a new Subsec. (b) to require practitioners to inform patients regarding the costs of diagnostic tests ordered, and added a new Subsec. (c) to require practitioners to make disclosures of financial interests in diagnostic imaging equipment to patients; P.A. 92-24 amended Subsec. (c) to change disclosure requirements from diagnostic imaging equipment to diagnostic or therapeutic services or compensation or remuneration for referrals of such services, to explain verbal and posted disclosure requirements, to add definition of entity which provides diagnostic or therapeutic services, and to make violation of Subsec. subject to disciplinary action.