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PDFWAC 246-453-010


As used in this chapter, unless the context requires otherwise,
(1) "Department" means the Washington state department of health created by chapter 43.70 RCW;
(2) "Hospital" means any health care institution which is required to qualify for a license under RCW 70.41.020(2); or as a psychiatric hospital under chapter 71.12 RCW;
(3) "Manual" means the Washington State Department of Health Accounting and Reporting Manual for Hospitals, adopted under WAC 246-454-020;
(4) "Indigent persons" means those patients who have exhausted any third-party sources, including medicare and medicaid, and whose income is equal to or below 200% of the federal poverty standards, adjusted for family size or is otherwise not sufficient to enable them to pay for the care or to pay deductibles or coinsurance amounts required by a third-party payor;
(5) "Charity care" means appropriate hospital-based medical services provided to indigent persons, as defined in this section;
(6) "Bad debts" means uncollectible amounts, excluding contractual adjustments, arising from failure to pay by patients whose care has not been classified as charity care;
(7) "Appropriate hospital-based medical services" means those hospital services which are reasonably calculated to diagnose, correct, cure, alleviate, or prevent the worsening of conditions that endanger life, or cause suffering or pain, or result in illness or infirmity, or threaten to cause or aggravate a handicap, or cause physical deformity or malfunction, and there is no other equally effective more conservative or substantially less costly course of treatment available or suitable for the person requesting the service. For purpose of this section, "course of treatment" may include mere observation or, where appropriate, no treatment at all;
(8) "Medical staff" means physicians, dentists, nurses, and other professional individuals who have admitting privileges to the hospital, and may also participate as members of the medical staff committees, serve as officers of the medical staff, and serve as directors or chiefs of hospital departments;
(9) "Third-party coverage" and "third-party sponsorship" means an obligation on the part of an insurance company or governmental program which contracts with hospitals and patients to pay for the care of covered patients and services, and may include settlements, judgments, or awards actually received related to the negligent acts of others which have resulted in the medical condition for which the patient has received hospital services;
(10) "Unusually costly or prolonged treatment" means those services or combinations of services which exceed two standard deviations above the average charge, and/or three standard deviations above the average length of stay, as determined by the department's discharge database;
(11) "Emergency care or emergency services" means services provided for care related to an emergency medical or mental condition;
(12) "Emergency department" and "emergency room" means that portion of the hospital facility organized for the purpose of providing emergency care or emergency services;
(13) "Emergency medical condition" means a medical condition manifesting itself by acute symptoms of sufficient severity, including severe pain, such that the absence of immediate medical attention could reasonably be expected to result in:
(a) Placing the health of the individual (or, with respect to a pregnant woman, the health of the woman or her unborn child) in serious jeopardy;
(b) Serious impairment of bodily functions;
(c) Serious dysfunction of any bodily organ or part.
With respect to a pregnant woman who is having contractions the term shall mean:
(d) That there is inadequate time to effect a safe transfer to another hospital before delivery; or
(e) That transfer may pose a threat to the health or safety of the woman or the unborn child;
(14) "Responsible party" means that individual who is responsible for the payment of any hospital charges which are not subject to third-party sponsorship;
(15) "Limited medical resources" means the nonavailability of services or medical expertise which are required or are expected to be required for the appropriate diagnosis, treatment, or stabilization per federal requirements of an individual's medical or mental situation;
(16) "Publicly available" means posted or prominently displayed within public areas of the hospital, and provided to the individual in writing and explained, at the time that the hospital requests information from the responsible party with regard to the availability of any third-party coverage, in any language spoken by more than ten percent of the population in the hospital's service area, and interpreted for other non-English speaking or limited-English speaking or other patients who can not read or understand the writing and explanation;
(17) "Income" means total cash receipts before taxes derived from wages and salaries, welfare payments, Social Security payments, strike benefits, unemployment or disability benefits, child support, alimony, and net earnings from business and investment activities paid to the individual;
(18) "Family" means a group of two or more persons related by birth, marriage, or adoption who live together; all such related persons are considered as members of one family;
(19) "Initial determination of sponsorship status" means an indication, pending verification, that the services provided by the hospital may or may not be covered by third party sponsorship, or an indication from the responsible party, pending verification, that he or she may meet the criteria for designation as an indigent person qualifying for charity care; and
(20) "Final determination of sponsorship status" means the verification of third party coverage or lack of third party coverage, as evidenced by payment received from the third party sponsor or denial of payment by the alleged third party sponsor, and verification of the responsible party's qualification for classification as an indigent person, subsequent to the completion of any appeals to which the responsible party may be entitled and which on their merits have a reasonable chance of achieving third-party sponsorship in full or in part.
[Statutory Authority: Chapters 43.070 [43.70] and 70.170 RCW. WSR 94-12-089, § 246-453-010, filed 6/1/94, effective 7/2/94. Statutory Authority: RCW 70.170.060. WSR 91-05-048 (Order 142), § 246-453-010, filed 2/14/91, effective 3/17/91. Statutory Authority: RCW 43.70.040. WSR 91-02-049 (Order 121), recodified as § 246-453-010, filed 12/27/90, effective 1/31/91. Statutory Authority: Chapter 70.39 RCW. WSR 85-01-007 (Order 84-07, Resolution No. 84-07), § 261-14-020, filed 12/7/84.]
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