2010 Wisconsin Code
Chapter 448. Medical practices.
448.08 Fee splitting; separate billing required, partnerships and corporations; contract exceptions.

448.08

448.08 Fee splitting; separate billing required, partnerships and corporations; contract exceptions.

448.08(1)

(1) Definitions. As used in this section:

448.08(1)(a)

(a) "Hospital" means an institution providing 24-hour continuous service to patients confined therein which is primarily engaged in providing facilities for diagnostic and therapeutic services for the surgical and medical diagnosis, treatment and care, of injured or sick persons, by or under the supervision of a professional staff of physicians and surgeons, and which is not primarily a place of rest for the aged, drug addicts or alcoholics, or a nursing home. Such hospitals may charge patients directly for the services of their employee nurses, nonphysician anesthetists, physical therapists and medical assistants other than physicians or dentists, and may engage on a salary basis interns and residents who are participating in an accredited training program under the supervision of the medical staff, and persons with a temporary educational certificate issued under s. 448.04 (1) (c).

448.08(1)(b)

(b) "Medical education and research organization" means a medical education and medical research organization operating on a nonprofit basis.

448.08(1m)

(1m) Fee splitting. Except as otherwise provided in this section, no person licensed or certified under this subchapter may give or receive, directly or indirectly, to or from any person, firm or corporation any fee, commission, rebate or other form of compensation or anything of value for sending, referring or otherwise inducing a person to communicate with a licensee in a professional capacity, or for any professional services not actually rendered personally or at his or her direction.

448.08(2)

(2) Separate billing required. Any person licensed under this subchapter who renders any medical or surgical service or assistance whatever, or gives any medical, surgical or any similar advice or assistance whatever to any patient, physician or corporation, or to any other institution or organization of any kind, including a hospital, for which a charge is made to such patient receiving such service, advice or assistance, shall, except as authorized by Title 18 or Title 19 of the federal social security act, render an individual statement or account of the charges therefor directly to such patient, distinct and separate from any statement or account by any physician or other person, who has rendered or who may render any medical, surgical or any similar service whatever, or who has given or may give any medical, surgical or similar advice or assistance to such patient, physician, corporation, or to any other institution or organization of any kind, including a hospital.

448.08(3)

(3) Billing for tests performed by the state laboratory of hygiene. A person other than a state or local government agency who charges a patient, other person or 3rd-party payer for services performed by the state laboratory of hygiene shall identify the actual amount charged by the state laboratory of hygiene and shall restrict charges for those services to that amount.

448.08(4)

(4) Professional partnerships and corporations permitted. Notwithstanding any other provision in this section, it is lawful for 2 or more physicians, who have entered into a bona fide partnership for the practice of medicine, to render a single bill for such services in the name of such partnership, and it also is lawful for a service corporation to render a single bill for services in the name of the corporation, provided that each individual licensed, registered or certified under this chapter or ch. 446, 449, 450, 455, 457 or 459 that renders billed services is individually identified as having rendered such services.

448.08(5)

(5) Contract exceptions; terms. Notwithstanding any other provision in this section, when a hospital and its medical staff or a medical education and research organization and its medical staff consider that it is in the public interest, a physician may contract with the hospital or organization as an employee or to provide consultation services for attending physicians as provided in this subsection.

448.08(5)(a)

(a) Contracts under this subsection shall:

448.08(5)(a)1.

1. Require the physician to be a member of or acceptable to and subject to the approval of the medical staff of the hospital or medical education and research organization.

448.08(5)(a)2.

2. Permit the physician to exercise professional judgment without supervision or interference by the hospital or medical education and research organization.

448.08(5)(a)3.

3. Establish the remuneration of the physician.

448.08(5)(b)

(b) If agreeable to the contracting parties, the hospital or medical education and research organization may charge the patient for services rendered by the physician, but the statement to the patient shall indicate that the services of the physician, who shall be designated by name, are included in the departmental charges.

448.08(5)(c)

(c) No hospital or medical education and research organization may limit staff membership to physicians employed under this subsection.

448.08(5)(d)

(d) The responsibility of physician to patient, particularly with respect to professional liability, shall not be altered by any employment contract under this subsection.

448.08 - ANNOT.

History: 1975 c. 383, 421; 1977 c. 29; 1993 a. 107, 473; 1995 a. 167, 225; 1997 a. 175; 2007 a. 97.

448.08 - ANNOT.

A medical professional service corporation may bill patients for services by both a physician and a physical therapist if billing states an accurate figure for the respective services. 71 Atty. Gen. 108.

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