§ 5-29-1. Definitions.
(a) "Board" means the Rhode Island board of examiners in podiatry.
(b) "Department" means the Rhode Island department of health.
(c) "Director" means the director of the Rhode Island department of health.
(d) "Health care facility" means any institutional health service provider licensed pursuant to the provisions of chapter 17 of title 23.
(e) "Health maintenance organization" means a public or private organization licensed pursuant to the provisions of chapter 17 of title 23 or chapter 41 of title 27.
(f) "Limited registrant" means a person holding a limited registration certificate pursuant to the provisions of this chapter.
(g) "Nonprofit medical services corporation" or "nonprofit hospital service corporation" or "nonprofit podiatry/medical service corporation" means any corporation organized pursuant to chapter 19 or 20 of title 27 for the purpose of establishing, maintaining and operating a nonprofit medical hospital.
(h) "Peer review board" means any committee of a state or local podiatry association or society, or a committee of any licensed health care facility, or the podiatry staff of the committee, or any committee of a podiatric care foundation or health maintenance organization, or any staff committee or consultant of a hospital, medical, or podiatric service corporation, the function of which, is to evaluate and improve the quality of podiatric care rendered by providers of podiatric care service or to determine that podiatric care services rendered were professionally indicated or were performed in compliance with the applicable standard of care or that the cost for podiatric care rendered was considered reasonable by the providers of professional podiatric care services in the area and shall include a committee functioning as a utilization review committee under the provisions of the Health Insurance for the Aged Act (Medicare) or as a professional standards review organization or statewide professional standards review council under the provisions of P.L. 92-603, 42 U.S.C. § 1301 et seq., (professional standards review organizations) or a similar committee or a committee of similar purpose, to evaluate or review the diagnosis or treatment of the performance or rendition of podiatric services which are performed under public podiatric programs of either state or federal design.
(i) "Person" means any individual, partnership, firm, corporation, association, trust or estate, state or political subdivision or instrumentality of a state.
(j) "Podiatrist" means a person with a license to practice podiatric medicine and surgery in this state under the provisions of this chapter.
(k) "Podiatrist," a person licensed as described in this chapter, shall be considered a physician and surgeon of the foot and ankle. For the purposes of reimbursement by and for subscriber benefits/participation agreements with health maintenance organizations, nonprofit medical service corporations, for-profit medical service corporations, and third party insurers, it is unlawful to discriminate against podiatrists.
(l) "Practice of podiatry." Any person is practicing podiatry within the meaning of this chapter who uses or permits to be used, directly or indirectly, for profit or otherwise, for their own self or for any other person, in connection with their own name, the word "podiatrist" or "podiatric physician and surgeon," or the title DPM, or any other words, letters, titles, or descriptive matter, personal or not, which directly or indirectly implies the practice of podiatry, or who owns, leases, maintains, or operates a podiatry business in any office or other room or rooms where podiatry operations are performed, or directly or indirectly is manager, proprietor or conductor of the business; or who directly or indirectly informs the public in any language, orally, in writing, or by drawings, demonstrations, specimens, signs, or pictures that he or she can perform or will attempt to perform foot operations of any kind; or who undertakes, by any means or method, gratuitously or for a salary, fee, money, or other reward paid or granted directly or indirectly to himself or herself or to any other person, to diagnose or profess to diagnose, or to treat or profess to treat, or to prescribe for or profess to prescribe for any of the lesions, diseases, disorders, or deficiencies of the pedal extremity. The foot is defined to be the pedal extremity of the human body and its articulations, and shall include the tendons and muscles of the lower leg only as they are involved in the condition of the foot.
(m) Wherever in the general or public laws there appear the words chiropody, chiropodist and chiropodists, the words podiatry, podiatrist and podiatrists shall be substituted.
(P.L. 1988, ch. 274, § 2.)