PRINTER'S NO. 2523
THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF PENNSYLVANIA
INTRODUCED BY DENLINGER, BAKER, JAMES, SAYLOR, SANKEY, THOMAS, ROCK, CUTLER, KAUFFMAN, BOBACK, GINGRICH, SWANGER, COHEN, CLYMER, BARRAR, COX, GILLEN AND BENNINGHOFF, OCTOBER 17, 2013
REFERRED TO COMMITTEE ON HEALTH, OCTOBER 17, 2013
6Section 1. Short title.
9Section 2. Legislative findings.
10 The General Assembly finds and declares as follows:
11(8) Expanding physicians' civil immunity from tort
12claims in exchange for their ongoing commitments to
13charitable practice in free clinics can improve low income
14patients' access to a range of medical options while reducing
15Medicaid utilization and expenditures.
16Section 3. Definitions.
20"Department." The Department of Health of the Commonwealth.
21"Free clinic." A health care facility that is licensed under
22the act of July 19, 1979 (P.L.130, No.48), known as the Health
23Care Facilities Act, is operated by a nonprofit private entity
24and meets all of the following criteria:
25(1) The facility does not accept reimbursements for
26health care services from any third-party payer, including
27reimbursements under any insurance policies or health
28benefits plans, or under any Federal or State health benefits
29programs. The facility may accept voluntary donations for the
30provision of services.
6"Free clinic offsite program." A program or event operated
7by a free clinic through which qualifying health services are
8provided to patients at a site other than the free clinic, which
9may include a volunteer health care practitioner's customary
10practice location or another location, as appropriate.
11"Health care practitioner." An individual authorized to
12practice a component of the healing arts by a license, permit,
13certificate or registration issued by a State licensing agency
14or board under 49 Pa. Code Pt. I Subpt. A (relating to
15professional and occupational affairs).
19Section 4. Certification.
23(1) The individual is a health care practitioner.
10(2) Provide documentation to the department, on a
11quarterly basis, certifying that the individual has provided
12not less than 48 hours per calendar quarter of qualifying
13health services at a free clinic or a free clinic offsite
14program. The documentation shall include verification, by the
15medical director of the free clinic, of the qualifying health
20Section 5. Immunity.
21(a) General rule.--An individual who is certified by the
22department as a volunteer health care practitioner under this
23act shall be immune from civil liability for any personal injury
24to or wrongful death of a patient that is a result of any act or
25omission in the course of providing care or treatment if the
26care or treatment was reasonably provided in good faith and if
27the individual was acting within the scope of his practice.
28Immunity granted under this section does not apply to an act or
29omission that was the result of gross negligence or willful or
1(b) Remedy.--The exclusive remedy for injury or damage
2suffered as a result of any act or omission of a volunteer
3health care practitioner is by commencement of an action against
4the Commonwealth in a court of competent jurisdiction.
5Section 6. Rules and regulations.
8Section 7. Effective date.
9This act shall take effect in 90 days.