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Ohio ACEP Backs Medical Liability Legislation

House Bill 559, introduced by Rep. Robert Cupp (R – Lima), would make several positive changes to medical liability laws in Ohio. If enacted, the legislation would:

  • Allow for liability protection for care given during a disaster using the “reckless disregard” standard
  • Update Ohio’s “I’m Sorry” law to state that an expression of “error or fault” is inadmissible as evidence
  • Grant liability protection for physicians and others who discharge (or fail to discharge) those with mental health conditions if the provider is acting in good faith
  • State that insurers’ reimbursement policies are not admissible evidence to establish a medical standard of care
  • State that provisions of the Affordable Care Act are not admissible evidence to establish a medical standard of care 

Ohio ACEP is pleased that, among other positive provisions, HB 559 would strengthen Ohio’s “I’m Sorry” law, which is a major priority for the Chapter and would promote honest and open communication between physicians and patients. After an adverse medical event, no health care provider should have to consider their own legal protection before reaching out to patients and family members to discuss the case, express sympathy, or even offer comfort and support.

Ohio ACEP has reached out to Rep. Cupp to offer assistance and to indicate our willingness to testify in support of the bill. Stay tuned for updates on HB 559’s progress.

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