Recently, large insurance and for-profit healthcare companies have taken advantage of COVID-19 and are lobbying for their facility owners to receive complete immunity from any malpractice lawsuits that occur during the pandemic. Our Miami consumer defense attorneys are here to inform you of the latest news that could potentially affect your case.
Deceptive Intentions By Healthcare Companies
Despite existing Florida laws in favor of protecting health care workers and providers, healthcare companies are still pushing for more protection. It would be more understandable if these companies’ interests were in favor of protecting the well-being of their employees; however, only their only interest is profit.
Granting immunity to healthcare company owners would make a malpractice lawsuit increasingly difficult, not to mention it is entirely unnecessary. Florida law already gives immunity to hospitals and healthcare providers during pandemics unless the patient can overtly document “reckless disregard for the consequences.”
Florida Law and CARES Protection for Miami Healthcare Consumers
Florida law stipulates that before filing a malpractice lawsuit, the patient must have an expert in the same field review the case and sign an Affidavit backing the claim. Additionally, immunity already applies to doctors providing care to those who cannot pay during “declared emergencies” – impeding any lawsuits from being filed. With these regulations in place, it is hard enough to successfully pursue a malpractice suit during COVID-19 without any additional immunity that health care companies are calling for.
Furthermore, the CARES Act provides additional protection for healthcare workers, not facility owners, and was explicitly designed for malpractice cases during COVID-19. The CARES Act gives volunteer healthcare workers and medical personnel immunity when using covered medical countermeasures – including:
“…any antiviral, any other drug, any biologic, any diagnostic, any other device, or any vaccine used to treat, diagnose cure, prevent, or mitigate COVID-19, or the transmission of SARS-CoV-2 or a virus mutating therefrom, or any device used in the administration of any such product, and all components and constituent materials of any such product.”
This immunity was even expanded to protect those who do not have immediate contact with such COVID-19 countermeasures, applying to those who prescribe, distribute, deliver, and even more.
Clarifying Corporate Immunity for Miami Healthcare Consumers
With the existing Florida laws protecting healthcare workers as well as the CARES Act specifically guarding those helping with COVID-19 medical relief, it’s evident that the extended immunity for healthcare and insurance company owners are not necessary and only protect their pockets. At this point, there has been no increase in fraudulent malpractice cases during COVID-19 in Florida, completely contradicting what these large health care companies are claiming. There is already ample law protection in place that protects their workers and physicians – the only people it would hurt are the patients, especially those who have suffered improper treatment during this time.
Instead of focusing on how to protect themselves in cases of malpractice, healthcare and insurance companies should be focusing on how to control the spreading of COVID-19 and increase measures of protection for those who have been horribly impacted by the disease. Irresponsible companies who are knowingly practicing dangerously should be held accountable, not given immunity.
If you are someone who has suffered unjust health care during COVID-19, or at any time, contact our expert Miami consumer defense attorneys at Graham Legal, P.A. to explore your case and seek proper compensation. Schedule your free consultation today.