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  • PART I ADMINISTRATION OF THE GOVERNMENT
  • TITLE XVI PUBLIC HEALTH
  • CHAPTER 111 PUBLIC HEALTH
  • Section 1 Definitions

Section 1. The following words as used in this chapter, unless a different meaning is required by the context or is specifically prescribed, shall have the following meanings:

“Board of health” shall include the board or officer having like powers and duties in towns where there is no board of health.

“Commissioner”, the commissioner of public health.

“Council”, the public health council of the department of public health.

“Department”, the department of public health.

“Disease dangerous to the public health” shall include all diseases defined as such in accordance with section six.

“Farming” or “agriculture”, farming in all of its branches and cultivation and tillage of the soil, dairying, the production, cultivation, growing and harvesting of any agricultural, aquacultural, floricultural or horticultural commodities, the growing and harvesting of forest products upon forest land, the raising of livestock including horses, the keeping of horses as a commercial enterprise, the keeping and raising of poultry, swine, cattle and other domesticated animals used for food purposes, bees, fur-bearing animals, and any practices, including any forestry or lumbering operations, performed by a farmer, who is hereby defined as one engaged in agricultural of farming as herein defined, or on a farm as an incident to or in conjunction with such farming operations, including preparations for market, delivery to storage or to market or to carriers for transportation to market.

“Health care provider”, any doctor of medicine, osteopathy, or dental science, or a registered nurse, social worker, doctor of chiropractic, or psychologist licensed under the provisions of chapter one hundred and twelve, or an intern, or a resident, fellow, or medical officer licensed under section nine of said chapter one hundred and twelve, or a hospital, clinic or nursing home licensed under the provisions of chapter one hundred and eleven and its agents and employees, or a public hospital and its agents and employees.

“Inland waters” shall include any and all lakes, ponds, streams, tidal waters and flats, and underground waters.

“Medical peer review committee” or “committee”, a committee of a state or local professional society of health care providers, including doctors of chiropractic, or of a medical staff of a public hospital or licensed hospital or nursing home or health maintenance organization organized under chapter one hundred and seventy-six G, provided the medical staff operates pursuant to written by-laws that have been approved by the governing board of the hospital or nursing home or health maintenance organization or a committee of physicians established pursuant to section 12 of chapter 111C for the purposes set forth in subsection (f) of section 203, which committee has as its function the evaluation or improvement of the quality of health care rendered by providers of health care services, the determination whether health care services were performed in compliance with the applicable standards of care, the determination whether the cost of health care services were performed in compliance with the applicable standards of care, determination whether the cost of the health care services rendered was considered reasonable by the providers of health services in the area, the determination of whether a health care provider’s actions call into question such health care provider’s fitness to provide health care services, or the evaluation and assistance of health care providers impaired or allegedly impaired by reason of alcohol, drugs, physical disability, mental instability or otherwise; provided, however, that for purposes of sections two hundred and three and two hundred and four, a nonprofit corporation, the sole voting member of which is a professional society having as members persons who are licensed to practice medicine, shall be considered a medical peer review committee; provided, further, that its primary purpose is the evaluation and assistance of health care providers impaired or allegedly impaired by reason of alcohol, drugs, physical disability, mental instability or otherwise. “Medical peer review committee” shall include a committee of a pharmacy society or association that is authorized to evaluate the quality of pharmacy services or the competence of pharmacists and suggest improvements in pharmacy systems to enhance patient care; or a pharmacy peer review committee established by a person or entity that owns a licensed pharmacy or employs pharmacists that is authorized to evaluate the quality of pharmacy services or the competence of pharmacists and suggest improvements in pharmacy systems to enhance patient care.

“Nuclear reactor”, any apparatus, other than an atomic weapon, designed to sustain nuclear fission in a self-supporting chain reaction.

“Primary care provider”, a health care professional qualified to provide general medical care for common health care problems who; (1) supervises, coordinates, prescribes, or otherwise provides or proposes health care services; (2) initiates referrals for specialist care; and (3) maintains continuity of care within the scope of practice.

“Shaken baby syndrome”, a form of abusive head trauma, characterized by a constellation of symptoms caused by a non-accidental traumatic injury resulting from the violent shaking of and impact upon an infant or child’s head.