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Legislation aims to protect Michigan health care workers from 'unwarranted' COVID-19 lawsuits

Legislation aims to protect Michigan health care workers from 'unwarranted' COVID-19 lawsuits
Posted at 3:23 PM, Aug 05, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-05 15:23:37-04
(WXYZ) —

New legislation would protect Michigan health care workers from "unwarranted" COVID-19 lawsuits.

State Rep. Joe Bellino says that health care professionals have been forced to make difficult decisions while caring for patients under strained circumstances due to COVID-19.

“Michigan’s health care workers have put their own wellbeing on the line to provide critical care throughout this health crisis,” Bellino said in a press release. “They’ve been forced to make incredibly difficult decisions under strained circumstances with limited resources in an effort to save lives.”

If enacted, Senate Bill 899 will ensure that health care workers are protected until the pandemic is over. The bill reflects the medical liability protections that Governor Gretchen Whitmer previously included in her executive order.

However, the bill does not provide blanket immunity; cases of willful misconduct, gross negligence or intentional infliction of harm would still be actionable for litigation.

“I’ve got the backs of our health care heroes, and I hope our governor does too,” Bellino said. “I think we can all agree: We want our medical professionals focusing on how best to care for their patients, rather than worrying about the possibility of a lawsuit.”

Additional Coronavirus information and resources:

Click here for a page with resources including a COVID-19 overview from the CDC, details on cases in Michigan, a timeline of Governor Gretchen Whitmer's orders since the outbreak, coronavirus' impact on Southeast Michigan, and links to more information from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, the CDC and the WHO.

View a global coronavirus tracker with data from Johns Hopkins University.

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