Title 27. Professions and Occupations

Chapter 1. Medicine, Surgery, Dentistry, Pharmacy, Nursing and Nurse-Midwifery

Subchapter Iib. Physician Assistant Licensing

 

27 V.I.C. § 50a

50a Definitions

As used in this subchapter

‘Physician assistant’ means a person who has graduated from a physician assistant or surgeon assistant program accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs, or by the predecessor or successor agency, and/or a person who has passed the certifying examination administered by the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants.

‘Board’ means the Virgin Islands Board of Medical Examiners.

‘Supervising physician’ means an M.D. or D.O. licensed by the Board, w ho supervises physician assistants.

‘Supervision’ means overseeing the activities of, and accepting responsibility for, the medical services rendered by a physician assistant as provided in section 50k.

Credits: Added May 28, 2005, No. 6735, § 2, Sess. L. 2005, p. 167.

27 V.I.C. § 50a, VI ST T. 27 § 50a.  Current through Act 8009 of the 32nd Legislature, including all code changes through August 23, 2017

 

27 V.I.C. § 50b

50b Qualifications for licensure

Except as otherwise provided in this subchapter, the Board shall license an individual before the individual may practice as a physician assistant. The Board may grant a license as a physician assistant to an applicant who:

(1) submits an application on forms approved by the Board;

(2) pays the appropriate fee as determined by the Board;

(3) has successfully completed an educational program for physician assistants or surgeon assistants accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Program, or by the predecessor or successor agency, or has passed the Physician Assistant National Certifying Examination administered by the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants;

(4) certifies that he is mentally and physically able to engage safely in practice as a physician assistant;

(5) has no licensure, certification, or registration as a physician assistant under current discipline, revocation, suspension, or probation for cause resulting from the applicant’s practice as a physician assistant, unless the Board considers such condition and agrees to licensure;

(6) is of good moral character;

(7) submits to the Board any other information the Board considers necessary to evaluate the applicant’s qualifications; or

(8) has on the effective date of this section worked as a Physician Assistant for any health facility under the auspices of the Department of Health, the semi-autonomous hospitals and the non-profit incorporated health centers for a period of at least three years; and

(9) has been approved by the Board.

Credits: Added May 28, 2005, No. 6735, § 2, Sess. L. 2005, pp. 167, 168; amende d Aug. 31, 2005, No. 6755, § 9, Sess. L. 2005, p. 230; Apr. 12, 2008, No. 6995, § 2, Sess. L. 2008, p. 47.

HISTORY:  Amendments  2008.Act 6995, § 2, added ‘or’ following the semicolon at the en d of subsection (7).  2005.Act 6755, § 9, inserted subsection (8) and redesignated former subsection (8) as present subsection (9).

27 V.I.C. § 50b, VI ST T. 27 § 50b. Current through Act 8009 of the 32nd Legislature, including all code changes through August 23, 2017

 

27 V.I.C. § 50c

50c Graduate license

The Board may grant a graduate license to an applicant who meets the qualifications for licensure except that the applicant has not yet taken the national certifying examination or is awaiting the results.

(a) A graduate license is valid

(1) for one year from the date of issuance;

(2) until the results of an applicant’s examination are available or;

(3) until the Board makes a final decision on the applicant’s request for licensure, whichever comes first.

(b) A graduate licensee who has not yet taken the examination shall take the next available examination. Failure to do so is ground for revocation of the graduate license, unless the graduate licensee is unable to take the examination due to an emergency circumstance accepted as such by the Board. The Board may extend a graduate license, upon a majority vote of the board members, for a period not to exceed one year. Under no circumstances may the Board grant more than one extension of a graduate license.

Credits: Added May 28, 2005, No. 6735, § 2, Sess. L. 2005, pp. 168, 169.

27 V.I.C. § 50c, VI ST T. 27 § 50c. Current through Act 8009 of the 32nd Legislature, including all code changes through August 23, 2017

 

27 V.I.C. § 50d

50d Temporary license

A temporary license may be granted to an applicant who meets all the qualifications for licensure but is awaiting the next scheduled meeting of the Board.

Credits: Added May 28, 2005, No. 6735, § 2, Sess. L. 2005, p. 169.

27 V.I.C. § 50d, VI ST T. 27 § 50d. Current through Act 8009 of the 32nd Legislature, including all code changes through August 23, 2017

 

27 V.I.C. § 50e

50e Inactive license

Any physician assistant who notifies the Board in writing on forms prescribed by the Board may elect to place his license on an inactive status. A physician assistant with an inactive license is excused from payment of renewal fees and may not practice as a physician assistant. Any person who engages in practice as a physician assistant while his license is lapsed or on inactive status is considered to be practicing without a license, which is ground for discipline under section 50n. A physician assistant requesting restoration from inactive status shall pay a renewal fee and shall meet the criteria for renewal as specified in section 50f.

Credits: Added May 28, 2005, No. 6735, § 2, Sess. L. 2005, p. 169.

27 V.I.C. § 50e, VI ST T. 27 § 50e.  Current through Act 8009 of the 32nd Legislature, including all code changes through August 23, 2017

 

27 V.I.C. § 50f

50f Renewal

Each person who holds a license as a physician assistant in this Territory shall, upon notification from the Board, renew the license by

(1) submitting the appropriate fee as determined by the Board;

(2) completing the appropriate forms; and

(3) meeting any other requirements set forth by the Board.

Credits: Added May 28, 2005, No. 6735, § 2, Sess. L. 2005, p. 169.

27 V.I.C. § 50f, VI ST T. 27 § 50f.  Current through Act 8009 of the 32nd Legislature, including all code changes through August 23, 2017

 

27 V.I.C. § 50g

50g Exemption from licensure

Nothing in this subchapter may be construed to require licensure under this subchapter if:

(1) a physician assistant student enrolled in a physician assistant or surgeon assistant educational program accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs, or by a successor agency;

(2) a physician assistant employed in the service of the federal government while performing duties incident to that employment; or

(3) technicians, other assistants or employees of physicians who perform physician delegated tasks, but who are not rendering services as a physician assistant or identifying themselves as a physician assistant.

Credits: Added May 28, 2005, No. 6735, § 2, Sess. L. 2005, pp. 169-170.

27 V.I.C. § 50g, VI ST T. 27 § 50g.  Current through Act 8009 of the 32nd Legislature, including all code changes through August 23, 2017

27 V.I.C. § 50h

50h Scope of practice, delegatory authority, agent of supervising physician

(a) Physician assistants practice medicine with physician supervision, as provided in section 50j. Physician assistants may perform those duties and responsibilities, including the ordering, prescribing and dispensing and administering of drugs and medical devices that are delegated by their supervising physician or physicians.

(b) Physician assistants may provide any medical service that is delegated by the supervising physician when the service is within the physician assistant’s skills, forms a component of the physician’s scope of practice, and is provided with supervision. Physician assistants may not perform any tasks that are outside of the scope of practice of the supervising physician or physicians. The scope of practice of a supervising physician encompasses those tasks that the physician has adequate training and experience to perform. Each supervising physician must submit his written attestation to the Virgin Islands Board of Medical Examiners stating that he has adequate training and experience for the physician assistant duties that he will supervise. Within 20 business days of the date of initiation, change, or termination of a contract to supervise a physician assistant, each physician with the respective change in supervising capacity of a physician assistant must submit to the Virgin Islands Board of Medical Examiners an update of his physician assistant’s scope of service parameters.

(c) With the supervising physician’s approval, physician assistants may pronounce death and may authenticate with their signature any form that may be authenticated by a physician’s signature.

(d) Physician assistants shall be considered the agents of their supervising physicians in the performance of all practice-related activities, including but not limited to, the ordering of diagnostic, therapeutic, and other medical services.

Credits: Added July 18, 2012, No. 7377, § 1, Sess. L. 2012, pp. 168-171.

27 V.I.C. § 50h, VI ST T. 27 § 50h.  Current through Act 8009 of the 32nd Legislature, including all code changes through August 23, 2017

 

27 V.I.C. § 50i

50i Prescriptive authority

(a) A physician assistant may prescribe, dispense, and administer drugs and medical devices to the extent delegated by the supervising physician.

(b) Prescribing of drugs to patients seen in the emergency department of a Virgin Islands Government hospital may include an up to 72 hour supply of Schedule III through V substances, as described in title 29, chapter 29 of the Virgin Islands Code, the Virgin Islands Controlled Substances Law, and prescribing and dispensing may include all other legend drugs. A physician assistant may only prescribe non-narcotic drugs for a period of up to 30 days. Physician assistants may not prescribe any refill for any medication.

(c) All dispensing activities of physician assistants must:

(1) Comply with appropriate federal and territorial regulations; and

(2) Occur when pharmacy services are not reasonably available, when it is in the best interest of the patient, or when it is an emergency.

(d) Physician assistants may request, receive, and sign for professional samples and may distribute professional samples to patients.

(e) Physician assistants authorized to prescribe controlled substances must register with the United States Drug Enforcement Administration and the Virgin Islands Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drug Control.

Credits: Added July 18, 2012, No. 7377, § 1, Sess. L. 2012, pp. 168-171.

27 V.I.C. § 50i, VI ST T. 27 § 50i.  Current through Act 8009 of the 32nd Legislature, including all code changes through August 23, 2017

 

27 V.I.C. § 50j

50j Supervision

(a) Supervision shall be continuous but shall not be construed as necessarily requiring the physical presence of the supervising physician at the time and place that the services are rendered. A supervising physician must be present on the island where the physician assistant service is being rendered to constitute continuous supervision. If the supervising physician is not present on the island where the physician assistant services are being rendered then the supervisory responsibility may be delegated by that physician to another physician with whom a supervisory agreement with the physician assistant is in place. Physician assistants may not practice independently on any island in the Virgin Islands. Physician assistants must be continuously supervised. Each supervising physician in the Virgin Islands must have an unrestricted license to practice medicine and surgery in the Virgin Islands. In the Virgin Islands a physician is not permitted to supervise more than three physician assistants at any one time. Every person practicing as a physician assistant in the Virgin Islands must be licensed to do so by the Virgin Islands Board of Medical Examiners. Physician assistants must practice within the written scope of health care services assigned to them by their respective supervising physicians. A separate office for the physician assistant shall not be established.

(b) The Board of Medical Examiners, in consultation with the Board of Pharmacy, shall promulgate such regulations governing the prescriptive authority of physician assistants as are deemed reasonable and necessary to ensure an appropriate standard of care for patients. The regulations promulgated pursuant to this section shall include at a minimum:

(1) Such requirements as may be necessary to ensure continued physician assistant competency that may include continuing education, testing, and/or any other requirement, and shall address the need to promote ethical practice, an appropriate standard of care, patient safety, the use of pharmaceuticals, and appropriate communication with patients;

(2) Requirements for periodic site visits by supervising licensees who supervise and direct physician assistants who provide services at a location other than where the licensee regularly practices; and

(3) A requirement that the assistant disclose to his patients that he is a physician assistant, and the name, address and telephone number of the supervising licensee.

(c) It is the obligation of each team of physician or physicians and physician assistant or physician assistants to ensure that the physician assistant’s scope of practice is identified; that delegation of medical tasks is appropriate to the physician assistant’s level of competence; that the relationship of, and access to, the supervising physician is defined; and that a process for evaluation of the physician assistant’s performance is established.

Credits: Added July 18, 2012, No. 7377, § 1, Sess. L. 2012, pp. 168-171.

HISTORY: Revision notes. ‘Virgin Islands’ was substituted for ‘United States Virgin Islands’ pursuant to the Revised Organic Act of 1954.

27 V.I.C. § 50j, VI ST T. 27 § 50j.  Current through Act 8009 of the 32nd Legislature, including all code changes through August 23, 2017

 

27 V.I.C. § 50k

50k Supervising physician

A physician wishing to supervise a physician assistant must:

(1) be licensed in the Virgin Islands;

(2) be free from any restriction on his ability to supervise a physician assistant which has been imposed by board disciplinary action; and

(3) maintain a written agreement with the physician assistant.

(A) The agreement must state that the physician will exercise supervision over the physician assistant in accordance with any rules adopted by the Board and will retain professional and legal responsibility for the care rendered by the physician assistant.

(B) The agreement must be signed by the physician and the physician assistant and updated annually.

(C) The agreement must be kept on file at the practice site and made available to the Board upon request.

Credits:  Added May 28, 2005, No. 6735, § 2, Sess. L. 2005, p. 171.

27 V.I.C. § 50k, VI ST T. 27 § 50k.  Current through Act 8009 of the 32nd Legislature, including all code changes through August 23, 2017

 

27 V.I.C. § 50l

50l Exclusions of limitations on employment

Nothing in this subchapter may be construed to limit the employment arrangement of a physician assistant licensed under this subchapter.

Credits: Added May 28, 2005, No. 6735, § 2, Sess. L. 2005, p. 171.

HISTORY:  Revision notes. As approved, Act No. 6735 did not contain a § 50l, there fore §§ 50m through 50u have been renumbered as §§ 50l through 50t to mainta in a consistent numbering scheme. Moreover, any internal references have been adjusted appropriately.

27 V.I.C. § 50l, VI ST T. 27 § 50l.  Current through Act 8009 of the 32nd Legislature, including all code changes through August 23, 2017

 

27 V.I.C. § 50m

50m Assumption of professional liability

If a physician assistant is employed by a physician or group of physicians, the physician assistant must be supervised by and be the legal responsibility of the employing physician. The legal responsibility for the physician assistant’s patient care activities remains that of the employing physician, including when the physician assistant provides care and treatment for patients in health care facilities. If a physician assistant is employed by a health care facility or other entity, the legal responsibility for the physician assistant’s actions or omissions is that of the employing facility or entity. Licensed physicians shall supervise physician assistants employed by such facilities.

Credits: Added May 28, 2005, No. 6735, § 2, Sess. L. 2005, p. 172.

27 V.I.C. § 50m, VI ST T. 27 § 50m. Current through Act 8009 of the 32nd Legislature, including all code changes through August 23, 2017

 

27 V.I.C. § 50n

50n Violations

The Board may, following the exercise of due process, discipline any physician assistant who:

(1) fraudulently or deceptively obtains or attempts to obtain a license;

(2) fraudulently or deceptively uses a license;

(3) violates any provision of this chapter or any regulations adopted by the Board pertaining to this chapter;

(4) is convicted of a felony;

(5) is a habitual user of intoxicants or drugs to such an extent that he is unable to safely perform as a physician assistant;

(6) has been adjudicated as mentally incompetent;

(7) is physically or mentally unable to engage safely in practice as a physician assistant;

(8) is negligent in practice as a physician assistant or demonstrates professional incompetence;

(9) except as required by law, violates patient confidentiality;

(10) prescribes, sells, administers, distributes, orders, or gives away any drug classified as a controlled substance for other than medically-accepted, therapeutic purposes;

(11) has committed an act of moral turpitude;

(12) is disciplined or has been disciplined by another state or jurisdiction based upon acts or conduct similar to acts or conduct that would constitute grounds for disciplinary action as defined in this section;

(13) fails to cooperate with an investigation conducted by the Board; or

(14) represents himself as a physician.

Credits: Added May 28, 2005, No. 6735, § 2, Sess. L. 2005, pp. 172, 173.

27 V.I.C. § 50n, VI ST T. 27 § 50n.  Current through Act 8009 of the 32nd Legislature, including all code changes through August 23, 2017

 

27 V.I.C. § 50o

50o Disciplinary authority

The Board, upon finding that a physician assistant has committed any offense described in section 50n, may do any of the following:

(1) refuse to grant a license;

(2) administer a public or private reprimand;

(3) revoke, suspend, limit, or otherwise restrict a license;

(4) require a physician assistant to submit to the care or counseling or treatment of a physician or physicians designated by the Board;

(5) impose other corrective measures;

(6) suspend enforcement of its finding thereof and place the physician assistant on probation with the right to vacate the probationary order for noncompliance; or

(7) restore or reissue, at its discretion, a license and impose any disciplinary or corrective measure that it may have imposed.

Credits: Added May 28, 2005, No. 6735, § 2, Sess. L. 2005, p. 173.

27 V.I.C. § 50o, VI ST T. 27 § 50o.  Current through Act 8009 of the 32nd Legislature, including all code changes through August 23, 2017

 

27 V.I.C. § 50p

50p Impaired physician assistant program

The Board shall establish and administer a program for the rehabilitation of physician assistants whose competency is impaired due to the abuse of drugs or alcohol. The Board may contract with any other territorial agency or private corporation to perform duties under this section. The program must be similar to that available to other health professionals licensed in the Virgin Islands.

Credits: Added May 28, 2005, No. 6735, § 2, Sess. L. 2005, p. 173.

27 V.I.C. § 50p, VI ST T. 27 § 50p.  Current through Act 8009 of the 32nd Legislature, including all code changes through August 23, 2017

 

27 V.I.C. § 50q

50q Unlicensed practice; unlawful use of title

(a) Any person not licensed under this subchapter is guilty of the unlicensed practice as a physician assistant and is subject to penalties applicable to the unlicensed practice of medicine under this subchapter if the person:

(1) holds himself out as a physician assistant;

(2) uses any combination or abbreviation of the term ‘physician assist ant’ to indicate or imply that he is a physician assistant; or

(3) acts as a physician assistant without being licensed by the Board.

(b) An unlicensed physician may not use the title of ‘physician assist ant’ or practice as a physician assistant, unless he fulfills the requirements of this subchapter.

Credits:Added May 28, 2005, No. 6735, § 2, Sess. L. 2005, pp. 173, 174.

27 V.I.C. § 50q, VI ST T. 27 § 50q. Current through Act 8009 of the 32nd Legislature, including all code changes through August 23, 2017

 

27 V.I.C. § 50r

50r Identification requirements

A physician assistant licensed under this subchapter shall keep his license available for inspection at his primary place of business and shall, when engaged in professional activities, wear a nametag identifying himself as a ‘physician assistant’.

Credits: Added May 28, 2005, No. 6735, § 2, Sess. L. 2005, p. 174.

27 V.I.C. § 50r, VI ST T. 27 § 50r.  Current through Act 8009 of the 32nd Legislature, including all code changes through August 23, 2017

 

27 V.I.C. § 50s

50s Participation in disaster and emergency care

(a) A physician assistant licensed in this Territory or licensed or authorized to practice in any state or territory of the United States who is responding to a need for emergency medical care created by an emergency or local disaster, other than an emergency situation that occurs in the place of his employment, may render such care that he is able to provide without supervision as it is defined in section 50j, or with such supervision as is available.

(b) Any physician who supervises a physician assistant providing medical care in response to such an emergency or local disaster is not required to meet the requirements set forth in this subchapter for an approved supervising physician.

(c) No physician assistant licensed in this Territory or licensed or authorized to practice in other territories or states of the United States who voluntarily and gratuitously, and other than in the ordinary course of employment or practice, renders emergency medical assistance is liable for civil damages for any personal injuries that result from acts or omissions by the person in rendering emergency care which may constitute ordinary negligence. The immunity granted by this section does not apply to acts or omissions constituting gross, willful, or wanton negligence or when the medical assistance is rendered at any hospital, physician’s office, or other health care delivery entity where those services are normally rendered. No physician who supervises a physician assistant voluntarily and gratuitously providing emergency care as described in this subsection is liable for civil damages for any personal injuries, which result from acts or omissions by the physician assistant rendering emergency care.

Credits:  Added May 28, 2005, No. 6735, § 2, Sess. L. 2005, pp. 174, 175.

27 V.I.C. § 50s, VI ST T. 27 § 50s.  Current through Act 8009 of the 32nd Legislature, including all code changes through August 23, 2017

 

27 V.I.C. § 50t

50t Rule-making authority

The Board shall promulgate, in accordance with title 3 Virgin Islands Code, chapter 35 (filing and publication of regulations), all rules that are reasonable and necessary for the performance of the various duties imposed upon the Board by the provisions of this subchapter, including but not limited to:

(1) setting licensure fees; and

(2) establishing renewal dates.

Credits: Added May 28, 2005, No. 6735, § 2, Sess. L. 2005, p. 175.

27 V.I.C. § 50t, VI ST T. 27 § 50t.  Current through Act 8009 of the 32nd Legislature, including all code changes through August 23, 2017