How Federal Virus Liability Law Will Apply To Vaccine Claims
Partner Nathan Adams authored a Law360 article about the Public Readiness and Emergency Preparedness (PREP) Act in the context of the successful trials conducted for a COVID-19 vaccine. The PREP Act authorizes the secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to limit legal liability for losses relating to the administration of medical countermeasures. Many healthcare providers are asking about the extent to which the PREP Act will protect them against liability under state and federal law as the COVID-19 vaccine progresses. The bottom line of the few cases that have examined the question is that the PREP Act is likely to preempt state claims relating to the administration of a vaccine, but unlikely to cover the failure to administer the vaccine or, more generally, the care received by patients at health care facilities.