R.I. Gen. Laws §23-17-53
§23-17-53 Physician contracts.
(a) A hospital, by contract or otherwise, may not refuse or fail to grant or renew medical staff membership or staff privileges, or condition or otherwise limit or restrict medical staff membership or staff privileges, based in whole or in part on the fact that the physician or a partner, associate, or employee of the physician is providing medical or health care services at a different hospital, hospital system, or on behalf of a health plan. Notwithstanding the previous sentence, a hospital may condition or otherwise limit or restrict staff privileges for reasons related to the availability of limited resources as determined in advance by the hospital’s governing body. Nor shall a hospital by contract, or otherwise, limit a physician’s participation or staff privileges or the participation or staff privileges of a partner, associate, or employee of the physician at a different hospital, hospital system or health plan.
(b) This section does not prevent a hospital from entering into contracts with physicians to ensure physician availability and coverage at the hospital or to comply with regulatory requirements or quality of care standards established by the governing body of the hospital, if contracts, requirements or standards do not require that a physician join, participate in or contract with a physician-hospital organization or similar organization as a condition of the grant or continuation of medical staff membership or staff privileges at the hospital.
(c) This section does not prevent the governing body of a hospital from limiting the number of physicians granted medical staff membership or privileges at the hospital based on a medical staff development plan that is unrelated to a physician or a partner, associate, or employee of a physician having medical staff membership or privileges at another hospital or hospital system.
(d) A contract provision that violates this section shall be void and of no force and effect.
(e) Hospitals shall allow patients of their medical staff to be evaluated and educated by the various appropriate departments of the hospital upon referral by their treating physician, regardless of the physician affiliation, as long as the physician has unrestricted privileges in their field of practice.
History of Section.
(P.L. 2000, ch. 124, § 1; P.L. 2000, ch. 331, § 1; P.L. 2009, ch. 132, § 1; P.L. 2009, ch. 172, § 1.)