Hospital Lawsuit Immunity
July 15, 2020
Whether people who have had Covid-19 are immune to the virus is an open question, but hospitals and other healthcare providers are acquiring another immunity, although it’s far from absolute. In the face of the extreme demands that have been laid upon them, health care providers are being offered some form of legal protection in 34 states, according to this post, and of those, 23 have received protections specifically to address the current pandemic. The list is notable for its diversity: It includes states large and small, both red and blue. Specifics vary, but they have common elements. One is that the immunity pertains to “good faith” efforts at care and excludes, among other things, gross negligence. Litigators in these states “face an uphill battle in determining what constitutes ‘gross negligence’ and pursuing tenable claims…” Litigation so far has been mostly internal, e.g. medical personnel suing their institutions, but patient-as-plaintiff litigation is expected.
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