With health care workers throughout the state dealing with a constant stream of COVID-19 cases coming into the hospitals and the state calling upon inactive and retired professionals to join the fight, a bipartisan bill aims to protect these professionals while they are on the frontlines of the pandemic. The legislation passed the full Senate and full Assembly Monday, 30-2 and 73-1-5 respectively, and now heads to the Governor.
Under the bill (A-3910), health care professionals would not be liable for allegedly causing the injury or death of a patient while providing medical services related to COVID-19. The immunity would not apply to gross negligence, recklessness or willful misconduct.
Assembly Democrats James Kennedy (D-Middlesex, Somerset, Union), John Burzichelli (D-Gloucester, Cumberland, Salem) and Louis Greenwald (D-Camden, Burlington) are sponsors of this legislation codifying the Governor’s Executive Order Number 103.
Upon the bill’s passage, the sponsors issued the following joint statement:
“Our health care workers are the true heroes of this crisis. Every day, doctors, nurses, physician assistants and other hard-working professionals deal with an onslaught of cases as they battle this new virus sweeping through the nation.
“New Jersey has called upon every trained professional to join in our efforts to treat the thousands of patients experiencing severe and sometimes life-threatening symptoms due to COVID-19.
“The health care professionals throughout our state are doing the best they can to save countless lives under challenging conditions – all while putting their own health on the line. This legislation is one way to support them and their efforts while recognizing the extreme circumstances this workforce is facing right now.”
A bi-partisan bill, Assembly Republican John DiMaio is also a sponsor of this legislation.