Last night, New York Governor, Andrew Cuomo, signed legislation repealing the State’s COVID-19 nursing home and hospital immunity provisions.
In April 2020, Governor Cuomo signed the Emergency Disaster Treatment Protection Act (hereinafter “EDTPA”) which granted broad, and retroactive, immunity to certain healthcare providers and facilities for good-faith actions or omissions taken in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Though the EDTPA was amended in August 2020 to allow healthcare providers to be held both civilly and criminally liable for care-related claims unrelated to the ongoing pandemic, it has still continued to afford healthcare providers immunity for liability related to COVID-19 virus treatment/care up to this time.
The new “Treatment Protection Act” signed last night repeals the previous immunity protections offered to health care facilities, administrators, and executives for liability relating to harm and damaged incurred at their facilities during the COVID-19 pandemic. The legislation includes the “Emergency or Disaster Treatment Protection Act,” “Mandatory Translation of Rights and Information on Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program,” and the Improved Certificate of Need Process.”
The Emergency or Disaster Treatment Protection Act (bill S.5177) repeals the protections afforded to nursing homes, hospitals, and other healthcare facilities for treating patients during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Mandatory Translation of Rights and Information on Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program (bill S.4377), mandates that nursing home residents’ bill of rights be translated into the six most common non-English languages spoken in New York State. Finally, the Improved Certificate of Need Process (bill S.4893A), adds regulations related to transparency ‘to ensure nursing home assets and ownership information are made public.
We remain prepared to defend our clients, including nursing homes, healthcare facilities, and treatment providers, in all matters arising from, or occurring during, the COVID-19 pandemic.