health care professional
(3) Protection of enrollee-provider communications (A) In general Subject to subparagraphs (B) and (C), under a contract under section 1396b(m) of this title a medicaid managed care organization (in relation to an individual enrolled under the contract) shall not prohibit or otherwise restrict a covered health care professional (as defined in subparagraph (D)) from advising such an individual who is a patient of the professional about the health status of the individual or medical care or treatment for the individual’s condition or disease, regardless of whether benefits for such care or treatment are provided under the contract, if the professional is acting within the lawful scope of practice. (B) Construction Subparagraph (A) shall not be construed as requiring a medicaid managed care organization to provide, reimburse for, or provide coverage of, a counseling or referral service if the organization— (i) objects to the provision of such service on moral or religious grounds; and (ii) in the manner and through the written instrumentalities such organization deems appropriate, makes available information on its policies regarding such service to prospective enrollees before or during enrollment and to enrollees within 90 days after the date that the organization adopts a change in policy regarding such a counseling or referral service. Nothing in this subparagraph shall be construed to affect disclosure requirements under State law or under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 [ 29 U.S.C. 1001 et seq.]. (C) “Health care professional” defined For purposes of this paragraph, the term “health care professional” means a physician (as defined in section 1395x(r) of this title ) or other health care professional if coverage for the professional’s services is provided under the contract referred to in subparagraph (A) for the services of the professional. Such term includes a podiatrist, optometrist, chiropractor, psychologist, dentist, physician assistant, physical or occupational therapist and therapy assistant, speech-language pathologist, audiologist, registered or licensed practical nurse (including nurse practitioner, clinical nurse specialist, certified registered nurse anesthetist, and certified nurse-midwife), licensed certified social worker, registered respiratory therapist, and certified respiratory therapy technician.