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House Co-Sponsorship Memoranda

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House of Representatives
Session of 2017 - 2018 Regular Session


Posted: January 9, 2017 02:48 PM
From: Representative Matthew E. Baker
To: All House members
Subject: Volunteer Health Care Practitioners Act - Former HB 40
The Commonwealth continues to lose exceptional medical professionals to other states due to our outdated medical malpractice rules and regulations and the high cost of medical malpractice insurance. To prevent this loss of good medical talent and to provide quality health care services to those who cannot afford to pay, I am reintroducing the “Volunteer Health Care Practitioners Act.”

This bill provides that a health care practitioner who is certified as a volunteer health care practitioner by the Department of Health is immune from civil liability in accordance with the Act, so long as he/she provides 48 hours of uncompensated, voluntary care at a free health clinic within the Commonwealth every quarter. This bill currently only applies to those who meet the Commonwealth’s licensure requirements and are deemed employees of designated free health clinics. There is an exception for the immunity in that it does not extend to any act or omission that was the result of gross negligence or willful or wanton misconduct.

Simply put, health care practitioners would be able to relieve themselves of the burden of carrying medical malpractice insurance by providing free care to those in need. It is my hope that you will join me in sponsoring this important legislation.

Introduced as HB358