New Bill Would Allow Corporations to Practice Medicine in Kansas

Posted By American Med Spa Association, Thursday, February 14, 2019

A new bill introduced in Kansas would allow corporations and other business entities to practice medicine. The bill is introduced in both the House and Senate. In the House of Representatives, it is sponsored by the  Committee on Health and Human Services. The  Committee on Public Health and Welfare sponsored it in the Senate. You can review the text of House Bill 2146 (HB 2146) in full here and the identical bill is known as SB 120 in the Senate.
 
HB 2146 proposes a major shift in medical practice in Kansas. Currently, Kansas like most other states, prohibits what is known as the corporate practice of medicine. In these states, non-professional companies may not provide medical services nor may they hire health professionals to provide medical services. Historically, the fear has been that the non-professional employer with their profit motive would interfere with the physician patient relationship. HB 2146 would change this situation in Kansas by allowing business entities to employ people who are licensed by the Board of Healing Arts (the Board) to provide their professional services. While this marks a drastic change from the status quo HB 2146 would not create a free for all. Under the HB 2146 any business that wishes to engage in the practice of healing arts may only do so through employees who are licensed by the Board. The business must leave the manner of patient treatment up to the up to the licensed individual and they are prohibited from imposing their judgement for the professional judgement of the licensed employee. In order for a business entity to gain the ability to provide these health services they must obtain a “certificate of authorization” from the Board. Getting this certificate requires that the business submit an application that lists all of their licensed employees and pay a fee. The certificate would need to be renewed every other year. In many states that prohibit the corporate practice of medicine, the trend has been to loosen the restrictions or provide more options for medical professionals to practice.  In that respect, HB 2146 would place Kansas well ahead of others in relaxing the corporate practice of medicine prohibition. 
 
We will be monitoring HB 2146 and SB120 as it works its way through Kansas’s legislative process this year.  If you would like to contact HB 2146’s and SB120’s sponsors, they can be reached via the House Committee’s  website, and the Senate Committee’s website.