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YO R K C O M E D S O C . O R G

The full waiver can be accessed here.
This waiver applies to physicians who have an active-retired,
inactive, or expired license (i.e., those physicians who have
fully retired from practice and no longer practice medicine). To
administer vaccines under this waiver, there is no change needed in
a physician's licensure status. Physicians will maintain their current
license status. Such licensees (active-retired, expired, inactive) are
not required to maintain medical professional liability insurance
under the MCARE Act. The Pennsylvania Medical Society
(PAMED) has received clarification that physicians utilizing this
waiver to administer COVID-19 vaccines do not need to obtain
professional liability insurance.
Regarding liability, note that the PREP Act provides certain
liability protections for healthcare professionals for claims arising
out of the use of covered countermeasures (which includes the
administration of the COVID vaccine), except for those involving
willful misconduct. For information regarding the PREP Act,
see here. https://www.phe.gov/Preparedness/legal/prepact/Pages/
default.aspx Additionally, note that healthcare professionals in
certain facilities and settings were granted liability protections
under an executive order issued by Gov. Wolf last year.
Physicians should be aware that while they may have immunity
protection and are not required to obtain malpractice insurance,
this does not mean that they are immune from having a lawsuit
filed against them. No statute, executive order, or waiver can
prohibit a lawsuit from being filed. While a physician may
ultimately prevail in any lawsuit where they are deemed to be
immune, they will still be required to defend the initial suit
filed against them. Such defense comes with associated costs.
Therefore, while malpractice insurance may not be required,
physicians should still consider their individual circumstances to
determine whether to obtain malpractice insurance, even with
immunity protection. PAMED encourages any physician looking
to administer COVID vaccinations to speak with their malpractice
insurance carrier or the entity for whom they will be providing
services. PAMED wants to ensure that its members have a fuller
picture of what immunity covers and just as importantly, what it
does not cover. While the chances may be slim regarding a lawsuit,
that possibility still exists, however remote.

Waiver Regarding Medical Students
The State Board of Medicine and State Board of Osteopathic
Medicine regulate medical students only to the extent that they
perform as " clinical clerks. " DOS requested, and the Governor
approved, a waiver to allow clinical clerks licensed under both
boards to assist in administering COVID-19 vaccinations across
the Commonwealth, and not just in the hospitals to which they
have been assigned.
Appropriate supervisors of clinical clerks for this waiver
shall include physicians and surgeons, physician assistants and
nurse-midwives licensed by the State Boards of Medicine and
Osteopathic Medicine and certified registered nurse practitioners

and registered nurses licensed by the State Board of Nursing. This
waiver applies solely to COVID-19 vaccines and shall be valid for
the duration of the Governor's Disaster Emergency Declaration
plus an additional 90 days thereafter, unless terminated sooner.

Waiver Expanding Volunteer License
Practice Sites
Under the Volunteer Health Services Act, a volunteer license
holder is authorized to practice without remuneration only in
" approved clinics " or upon referral from an approved organization.
DOS requested and Gov. Wolf approved a suspension of this
requirement so that licensed volunteers under the State Boards
of Medicine, Osteopathic Medicine and Nursing can administer
vaccinations in settings that fall outside the definition of an
" approved clinic, " including community-based, primary-care
clinics and clinics in medically underserved areas, as well as state
and federally qualified health centers.
Additionally, the requirement that applicants for a volunteer
license submit a letter signed by the director or chief operating
officer of the " approved clinic " where they are volunteering has
also been suspended.

PAMED Advocacy
Through conversations with the Acting Secretary of Health as
well as other state representatives, PAMED advocated for clarity
and guidance regarding the ability of retired physicians to assist
with COVID-19 vaccinations.
Additionally, PAMED recently submitted a letter requesting
regulatory waivers to allow retired physicians to help with
vaccination efforts and for expansion of the parameters of the
Volunteer Health Services Act. PAMED applauds the swift
response on these requests and thanks Acting Secretary of Health
Beam for her assistance.
Access PAMED's letter here. (LINK NOT WORKING?)

Where Can I find Additional
Due to the COVID-19 emergency, additional statutory and
regulatory suspensions continue to be issued, and PAMED will
continue to provide updates as suspensions related to physician
practice and licensure are announced. When announced, licensing
suspensions will be posted by DOS here. https://tinyurl.com/
PAMED has established a COVID-19 resource page where you
will find additional information and resources on the COVID-19
outbreak. https://www.pamedsoc.org/education-cme/publichealth/covid/corona-virus
S P R I N G 2021 | York County Medicine


http://www.YORKCOMEDSOC.ORG https://www.tinyurl.com/u7szx85n https://www.phe.gov/Preparedness/legal/prepact/Pages/default.aspx https://tinyurl.com/u7szx85n https://www.pamedsoc.org/education-cme/public-health/covid/corona-virus

York County Medicine Spring 2021

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