Certain New York lawmakers are seeking to repeal the Emergency Disaster Treatment Protection Act (EDTPA), which granted immunity to certain health care providers and facilities, including nursing homes, regarding good faith actions or omissions undertaken in response to the COVID-19 outbreak.
“Behind closed doors and in secrecy, nursing home executives managed to push Governor Cuomo into adding a provision in this year’s budget that insulates them from criminal or civil liability during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Assemblyman Ron Kim, who is sponsoring the bill that would repeal the EDTPA. Kim argues that Cuomo should have done more to protect nursing home residents instead of granting broad immunity to facilities caring for them.
Assemblyman Dan Quart, a reported bill cosponsor, claims that the statute granting immunity to nursing homes “gives operators a license to neglect and abuse already vulnerable populations.”
Notably, the immunity protections under the EDTPA do not provide blanket immunity to nursing homes. Rather, liability may arise from gross negligence, reckless misconduct or intentional malfeasance. Further, New York’s EDTPA is one of many similar state statutes and executive orders that provide COVID-19 civil liability immunity to senior care facilities, such as nursing homes.
For more information regarding how this legislation would affect long-term care facilities and their personnel, please contact: