Bill Text: TX SB919 | 2019-2020 | 86th Legislature | Introduced


Bill Title: Relating to health care professional liability coverage for certain public institutions of higher education.

Spectrum: Partisan Bill (Democrat 1-0)

Status: (Introduced) 2019-03-01 - Referred to Higher Education [SB919 Detail]

Download: Texas-2019-SB919-Introduced.html
  86R8178 SCL-F
 
  By: West S.B. No. 919
 
 
 
A BILL TO BE ENTITLED
 
AN ACT
  relating to health care professional liability coverage for certain
  public institutions of higher education.
         BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
         SECTION 1.  The heading to Chapter 59, Education Code, is
  amended to read as follows:
  CHAPTER 59. HEALTH CARE PROFESSIONAL [MEDICAL] MALPRACTICE
  COVERAGE FOR CERTAIN INSTITUTIONS
         SECTION 2.  The heading to Subchapter A, Chapter 59,
  Education Code, is amended to read as follows:
  SUBCHAPTER A. HEALTH CARE [MEDICAL] PROFESSIONAL LIABILITY
         SECTION 3.  Sections 59.01(1), (2), (3), and (4), Education
  Code, are amended to read as follows:
               (1)  "Health care professional [Medical] staff members 
  or students" means:
                     (A)  physicians [medical doctors, doctors of
  osteopathy], dentists, veterinarians, [and] podiatrists, physician
  assistants, nurses, pharmacists, and other health care providers
  who:
                           (i)  are appointed to the faculty or
  [professional medical staff] employed [for student health
  services] by or volunteer for The University of Texas System, The
  Texas A&M University System, the Texas Tech University System, or
  the University of North Texas System; and
                           (ii)  either:
                                 (a)  are appointed or employed on a
  full-time basis; [Health Science Center at Fort Worth, either full
  time] or
                                 (b)  are appointed or volunteer on a
  part-time basis and who[, although appointed less than full time
  (including volunteers), either] devote their total professional
  service to providing health services [such appointment] or provide
  services to patients by assignment from the department chairman;
  and
                     (B)  interns, residents, fellows, [and] medical
  students, [or] dental students, veterinary students, [and]
  students of osteopathic medicine, nursing students, pharmacy
  students, and students of any other health care profession that
  requires a license, certificate, or other authorization under Title
  3, Occupations Code, [osteopathy] participating in a patient-care
  program in The University of Texas System, The Texas A&M University
  System, the Texas Tech University System, or the University of
  North Texas System [Health Science Center at Fort Worth].
               (2)  "Health care liability [Medical malpractice]
  claim" means a cause of action against a physician or health care
  professional for treatment, lack of treatment, or other claimed
  departure from accepted standards of medical care, health care, or
  veterinary care, or safety or professional or administrative
  services directly related to health care, which proximately results
  in injury to or death of a [the] patient, whether the [patient's]
  claim or cause of action [or the executor's claim or cause of action
  under Section 71.021, Civil Practice and Remedies Code,] sounds in
  tort or contract.
               (3)  "Board" means the board of regents of The
  University of Texas System, the board of regents of The Texas A&M
  University System, the board of regents of the Texas Tech
  University System, or the board of regents of the University of
  North Texas System.
               (4)  "Fund" means the health care [medical]
  professional liability fund.
         SECTION 4.  Sections 59.02, 59.04, 59.05, and 59.06,
  Education Code, are amended to read as follows:
         Sec. 59.02.  HEALTH CARE [MEDICAL] PROFESSIONAL LIABILITY
  FUND. (a) Each board may establish a separate self-insurance fund
  to pay any damages adjudged in a court of competent jurisdiction or
  a settlement of any health care liability [medical malpractice]
  claim against a health care professional [member of the medical]
  staff member or student [students] arising from the exercise of the
  member's or student's [his] appointment, duties, or training with
  The University of Texas System, The Texas A&M University System,
  the Texas Tech University System, or the University of North Texas
  System [Health Science Center at Fort Worth].
         (b)  The boards may pay from the funds all expenses incurred
  in the investigation, settlement, defense, or payment of claims
  described above on behalf of the health care professional [medical]
  staff members or students.
         (c)  On the establishment of each fund, transfers to the fund
  shall be made in an amount and at such intervals as determined by
  the board. Each board may receive and accept any gifts or donations
  specified for the purposes of this subchapter and deposit those
  gifts or donations into the fund. Each board may invest money
  deposited in the fund, and any income received shall be retained in
  the fund. The money shall be deposited in any of the approved
  depository banks of The University of Texas System, The Texas A&M
  University System, the Texas Tech University System, or the
  University of North Texas System [Health Science Center at Fort
  Worth]. All expenditures from the funds shall be paid pursuant to
  approval by the boards.
         Sec. 59.04.  PURCHASE OF INSURANCE. Each board may purchase
  health care liability [medical malpractice] insurance from an
  insurance company authorized to engage in the [do] business of
  insurance in this state as it considers necessary to carry out the
  purpose of this subchapter.
         Sec. 59.05.  LEGAL COUNSEL. Each board may employ private
  legal counsel to represent the health care professional [medical]
  staff members or [and] students covered by this subchapter under
  the rules of the board.
         Sec. 59.06.  LIMITATION ON APPROPRIATED FUNDS. Funds
  appropriated by the legislature to The University of Texas System,
  The Texas A&M University System, [either system, to] the Texas Tech
  University System [Health Sciences Center, to the Texas Tech
  University Health Sciences Center at El Paso], or [to] the
  University of North Texas System [Health Science Center at Fort
  Worth] from the General Revenue Fund may not be used to establish or
  maintain the fund, to purchase insurance, or to employ private
  legal counsel.
         SECTION 5.  Sections 59.08(a) and (e), Education Code, are
  amended to read as follows:
         (a)  The state shall indemnify a health care professional
  [member of the medical] staff member or [a] student for damages paid
  as required by a judgment on or settlement of a health care
  liability [medical malpractice] claim arising out of the provision
  of charitable care or services.
         (e)  The attorney general is entitled to approve any
  settlement of the portion of a health care liability [medical
  malpractice] claim that may result in the state being liable for
  indemnification of the defendant under this section. If the
  attorney general does not approve a settlement, the state is not
  liable for indemnification of the defendant under this section. The
  attorney general shall base the determination on the best interests
  of the defendant.
         SECTION 6.  Section 59.08, Education Code, as amended by
  this Act, applies only to a cause of action that accrues on or after
  the effective date of this Act.  A cause of action that accrued
  before the effective date of this Act is governed by the law as it
  existed immediately before the effective date of this Act, and that
  law is continued in effect for that purpose.
         SECTION 7.  This Act takes effect September 1, 2019.
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