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Tennessee

West's Tennessee Code Annotated. Title 58. Military Affairs, Emergencies and Civil Defense, Chapter 2. Disasters, Emergencies and Civil Defense, Part 8. Uniform Emergency Volunteer Health Practitioners Act of 2007

Statute Details
Printable Version
Citation: T. C. A. 58-2-801 - 813

Citation: TN ST 58-2-801 - 813


Last Checked by Web Center Staff: 11/2013

Summary:   The Tennessee Uniform Emergency Volunteer Health Practitioners Act of 2007 applies to registered volunteer health practitioners who provide health services for a host entity while an emergency declaration is in effect. Volunteer health practitioners authorized to provide health services are not liable for their acts or omissions in providing services. “Health services” means treatment, care, advice, guidance, or provision of supplies related to the health or death of an animal or to animal populations.


Statute in Full:

Link to Administrative Regulations



§ 58-2-801
. Short title

§ 58-2-802. Definitions

§ 58-2-803. Application of part

§ 58-2-804. Restriction and regulation; use of voluntary health practitioners

§ 58-2-805. Voluntary health practitioner registration system qualification; confirmation; notice

§ 58-2-806. Practitioners licensed elsewhere; practice and use of title; exception

§ 58-2-807. Credentialing and privileging standards

§ 58-2-808. Scope of practice; disciplinary actions

§ 58-2-809. Rights, privileges and immunities; incorporation into emergency forces

§ 58-2-810. Public necessity rules

§ 58-2-811. Liability; exceptions

§ 58-2-812. Medical workers' compensation benefits

§ 58-2-813. Construction and application of part

 

§ 58-2-801. Short title

This part shall be known and may be cited as the “Tennessee Uniform Emergency Volunteer Health Practitioners Act of 2007.”

Credits
2007 Pub.Acts, c. 579, § 2.

 

§ 58-2-802. Definitions

(a) As used in this part, unless the context otherwise requires:

(1) “Coordinating entity” means an entity that acts as a liaison to facilitate communication and cooperation between source and host entities but does not provide health services in the ordinary course of its activities as liaison;

(2) “Credentialing” means obtaining, verifying, and assessing the qualifications of a health practitioner to provide treatment, care or services in or for a health facility;

(3) “Department” means the department of health;

(4) “Disaster relief organization” means an entity that provides emergency or disaster relief services that include health services provided by volunteer health practitioners and that:

(A) Is designated or recognized as a provider of those services pursuant to a disaster response and recovery plan adopted by an agency of the federal government, the department or TEMA; or

(B) Regularly plans and conducts its activities in coordination with an agency of the federal government, the department or TEMA;

(5) “Emergency” has the same meaning as used in § 58-2-101;

(6) “Emergency declaration” has the same meaning as “declare a state of emergency” as used in § 58-2-107;

(7) “Emergency management assistance compacts” means the interstate compacts established under parts 4 and 7 of this chapter;

(8) “Entity” means a person other than an individual;

(9) “Health facility” has the same meaning as “facility” as defined in § 68-11-201 and “veterinary facility” as defined in § 63-12-103 licensed under the laws of this or another state to provide health services;

(10) “Health practitioner” means an individual licensed under any chapter of titles 62, 63 or 68, or their counterparts in another state, to provide health services;

(11) “Health services” means:

(A) The provision of treatment, care, advice or guidance, other services, or supplies related to the health or death of individuals or human populations, to the extent necessary to respond to an emergency, including:

(i) The following, concerning the physical or mental condition or functional status of an individual or affecting the structure or function of the body:

(a) Preventive, diagnostic, therapeutic, rehabilitative, maintenance, or palliative care; and

(b) Counseling, assessment, procedures, or other services;

(ii) Sale or dispensing of a drug, a device, equipment, or another item to an individual in accordance with a prescription; and

(iii) Funeral, cremation, cemetery, or other mortuary services; or

(B) The provision of treatment, care, advice or guidance, other services, or supplies related to the health or death of an animal or to animal populations, to the extent necessary to respond to an emergency, including:

(i) Diagnosis, treatment, or prevention of an animal disease, injury, or other physical or mental condition by the prescription, administration, or dispensing of vaccine, medicine, surgery, or therapy;

(ii) Use of a procedure for reproductive management; and

(iii) Monitoring and treatment of animal populations for diseases that have spread or demonstrate the potential to spread to humans;

(12) “Host entity” means an entity operating in this state that uses volunteer health practitioners to respond to an emergency;

(13) “License” means authorization by a state to engage in health services that are unlawful without the authorization. “License” includes authorization under the laws of this state to an individual to provide health services based upon a national certification issued by a public or private entity;

(14) “Person” means an individual, corporation, business trust, trust, partnership, limited liability company, association, joint venture, public corporation, government or governmental subdivision, agency, or instrumentality, or any other legal or commercial entity;

(15) “Privileging” means the authorizing by an appropriate authority, such as a governing body, of a health practitioner to provide specific treatment, care, or services at a health facility subject to limits based on factors that include license, education, training, experience, competence, health status, and specialized skill;

(16) “Scope of practice” means the extent of the authorization to provide health services granted to a health practitioner by a license issued to the practitioner in the state in which the principal part of the practitioner's services are rendered, including any conditions imposed by the licensing authority;

(17) “Source entity” means a person located in this or another state that employs or uses the services of health practitioners authorized to provide health services pursuant to this part;

(18) “State” means a state of the United States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the United States Virgin Islands, or any territory or insular possession subject to the jurisdiction of the United States;

(19) “TEMA” means the Tennessee emergency management agency; and

(20) “Voluntary health practitioner” means a health practitioner who provides health services, whether or not the practitioner receives compensation for those services. “Voluntary health practitioner” does not include a practitioner who receives compensation pursuant to a preexisting employment relationship with a host entity or affiliate that requires the practitioner to provide health services in this state, unless the practitioner is not a resident of this state and is employed by a disaster relief organization providing services in this state while an emergency declaration is in effect.

Credits
2007 Pub.Acts, c. 579, § 3.

 

§ 58-2-803. Application of part

This part shall apply to volunteer health practitioners registered with a registration system that meets the requirements of § 58-2-805 and who provide health services in this state for a host entity while an emergency declaration is in effect.

Credits
2007 Pub.Acts, c. 579, § 4.

 

§ 58-2-804. Restriction and regulation; use of voluntary health practitioners

(a) While an emergency declaration is in effect, TEMA may limit, restrict, or otherwise regulate:

(1) The duration and scope of practice by volunteer health practitioners;

(2) The geographical areas in which volunteer health practitioners may practice;

(3) The types of volunteer health practitioners who may practice; and

(4) Any other matters necessary to coordinate effectively the provision of health services during the emergency.

(b) An order issued pursuant to subsection (a) may take effect immediately, without prior notice or comment and is not a rule within the meaning of the Uniform Administrative Procedures Act, compiled in title 4, chapter 5.

(c) A host entity that uses volunteer health practitioners to provide health services in this state shall:

(1) Consult and coordinate its activities with TEMA to the extent practicable to provide for the efficient and effective use of volunteer health practitioners; and

(2) Comply with any laws relating to the management of emergency health services.

Credits
2007 Pub.Acts, c. 579, § 5.

 

§ 58-2-805. Voluntary health practitioner registration system qualification; confirmation; notice

(a) To qualify as a volunteer health practitioner registration system, a system must:

(1) Accept applications for the registration of volunteer health practitioners before or during an emergency;

(2) Include information about the licensure and good standing of health practitioners that is accessible by authorized persons;

(3) Be capable of confirming the accuracy of information concerning whether a health practitioner is licensed and in good standing before health services are provided under this part; and

(4) Meet one (1) of the following conditions:

(A) Be an emergency system for advance registration of volunteer healthcare practitioners established by a state and funded through the health resources services administration under § 3191 of the Public Health Services Act, 42 U.S.C. § 247d-7b;

(B) Be a local unit consisting of trained and equipped emergency response, public health, and medical personnel formed pursuant to § 2801 of the Public Health Services Act, 42 U.S.C. § 300hh;

(C) Be operated by a:

(i) Disaster relief organization;

(ii) Licensing board;

(iii) National or regional association of licensing boards of health practitioners;

(iv) Health facility that provides comprehensive inpatient and outpatient health-care services, including a tertiary care, acute care and/or teaching hospital; or

(v) Governmental entity; or

(D) Be designated by TEMA as a registration system for purposes of this part.

(b) While an emergency declaration is in effect, representatives of TEMA, a person authorized to act on behalf of TEMA, or a host entity may confirm whether volunteer health practitioners utilized in this state are registered with a registration system that complies with subsection (a). Confirmation is limited to obtaining identities of the practitioners from the system and determining whether the system indicates that the practitioners are licensed and in good standing.

(c) Upon request of a person in this state authorized under subsection (b), or a similarly authorized person in another state, a registration system located in this state shall notify the person of the identities of volunteer health practitioners and whether the practitioners are licensed and in good standing.

(d) A host entity is not required to use the services of a volunteer health practitioner, even if the practitioner is registered with a registration system that indicates that the practitioner is licensed and in good standing.

Credits
2007 Pub.Acts, c. 579, § 6.

 

§ 58-2-806. Practitioners licensed elsewhere; practice and use of title; exception

(a) While an emergency declaration is in effect, a volunteer health practitioner, registered with a registration system that complies with § 58-2-805 and licensed and in good standing in the state upon which the practitioner's registration is based, may practice and use the titles appropriate thereto in this state to the extent authorized by this part as if the practitioner were licensed in this state.

(b) A volunteer health practitioner qualified under subsection (a) is not entitled to the protections of this part if the practitioner is licensed in more than one (1) state and any license of the practitioner is disciplinarily suspended, revoked, or subject to an agency order limiting or restricting practice privileges, or has been voluntarily terminated under threat of sanction.

Credits
2007 Pub.Acts, c. 579, § 7.

 

§ 58-2-807. Credentialing and privileging standards

This part does not affect credentialing or privileging standards of a health facility and does not preclude a health facility from waiving or modifying those standards while an emergency declaration is in effect.

Credits
2007 Pub.Acts, c. 579, § 8.

 

§ 58-2-808. Scope of practice; disciplinary actions

(a) Subject to subsections (b) and (c), a volunteer health practitioner shall adhere to the scope of practice for a similarly licensed practitioner established by the licensing provisions, practice acts, or other laws of this state.

(b) Except as otherwise provided in subsection (c), this part does not authorize a volunteer health practitioner to provide services that are outside the practitioner's scope of practice, even if a similarly licensed practitioner in this state would be permitted to provide the services.

(c) TEMA may modify or restrict the health services that volunteer health practitioners may provide pursuant to this part. An order under this subsection (c) may take effect immediately, without prior notice or comment, and is not a rule within the meaning of the Uniform Administrative Procedures Act, compiled in title 4, chapter 5.

(d) A host entity may restrict the health services that a volunteer health practitioner may provide pursuant to this part.

(e) A volunteer health practitioner does not engage in unauthorized practice unless the practitioner has reason to know of any limitation, modification, or restriction under this section or that a similarly licensed practitioner in this state would not be permitted to provide the services. A volunteer health practitioner has reason to know of a limitation, modification, or restriction or that a similarly licensed practitioner in this state would not be permitted to provide a service if:

(1) The practitioner knows the limitation, modification, or restriction exists or that a similarly licensed practitioner in this state would not be permitted to provide the service; or

(2) From all the facts and circumstances known to the practitioner at the relevant time, a reasonable person would conclude that the limitation, modification, or restriction exists or that a similarly licensed practitioner in this state would not be permitted to provide the service.

(f) In addition to the authority granted by law of this state other than this part to regulate the conduct of health practitioners, a licensing board or other disciplinary authority in this state:

(1) May impose administrative disciplinary sanctions upon a health practitioner licensed in this state for conduct outside of this state in response to an out-of-state emergency;

(2) May impose civil penalties pursuant to § 63-1-134 upon a practitioner not licensed in this state for conduct in this state in response to an in-state emergency; and

(3) Shall report any civil penalty imposed upon a practitioner licensed in another state to the appropriate licensing board or other disciplinary authority in any other state in which the practitioner is known to be licensed.

(g) In determining whether to impose administrative disciplinary sanctions or civil penalties under subsection (f), a licensing board or other disciplinary authority shall consider the circumstances in which the conduct took place, including any exigent circumstances, and the practitioner's scope of practice, education, training, experience, and specialized skill.

Credits
2007 Pub.Acts, c. 579, § 9.

 

§ 58-2-809. Rights, privileges and immunities; incorporation into emergency forces

(a) This part does not limit rights, privileges, or immunities provided to volunteer health practitioners by laws other than this part. Except as otherwise provided in subsection (b), this part does not affect requirements for the use of health practitioners pursuant to the emergency management assistance compacts.

(b) TEMA, pursuant to the emergency management assistance compacts, may incorporate into the emergency forces of this state volunteer health practitioners who are not officers or employees of this state, a political subdivision of this state, or a municipality or other local government within this state.

Credits
2007 Pub.Acts, c. 579, § 10.

 

§ 58-2-810. Public necessity rules

TEMA may promulgate emergency rules to implement this part in accordance with the Uniform Administrative Procedures Act, compiled in title 4, chapter 5. In doing so, TEMA shall consult with the department and shall consult with and consider the recommendations of any other entity established to coordinate the implementation of the emergency management assistance compacts and shall also consult with and consider rules promulgated by similarly empowered agencies in other states to promote uniformity of application of this part and make the emergency response systems in the various states reasonably compatible.

Credits
2007 Pub.Acts, c. 579, § 11; 2009 Pub.Acts, c. 566, § 12, eff. July 1, 2009

 

§ 58-2-811. Liability; exceptions

(a) Subject to subsection (b), volunteer health practitioners authorized to provide health services pursuant to this part are not liable for the payment of a judgment based on their acts or omissions in providing services, nor shall they be named as defendants in an action based on their acts or omissions.

(b) Notwithstanding subsection (a), this section does not apply to:

(1) Willful, wanton, grossly negligent, reckless, or criminal conduct of, or an intentional tort committed by, a volunteer health practitioner; or

(2) An action brought against a volunteer health practitioner:

(A) For damages for breach of contract, other than for contracts related to the provision of health or veterinary services;

(B) By a source or host entity; or

(C) Relating to the operation of a motor vehicle, vessel, aircraft, or other vehicle by a volunteer health practitioner for which this state requires the operator to have a valid operator's license or to maintain liability insurance, other than an ambulance or other emergency response vehicle, vessel, or aircraft operated by a volunteer health practitioner responding to a request for health services or transporting a patient.

(c) Source, coordinating, and host entities are not vicariously liable for the acts or omissions of volunteer health practitioners in providing health services authorized pursuant to this part.

(d) Source, coordinating, and host entities are not liable for civil damages for the operation of, or reliance upon information provided by a registration system, unless the acts or omissions constitute an intentional tort or are willful, wanton, grossly negligent, reckless, or criminal in nature.

(e) Notwithstanding subsection (a), for purposes of recovering damages from the state, volunteer health practitioners shall be considered volunteer state employees under § 8-42-101(3)(B) for purposes of § 9-8-112, for the purposes of recovering damages from the states based on their acts or omissions in providing health services pursuant to this part. The registration of individual volunteer health practitioners with the board of claims required under § 8-42-101(3)(B) shall be made by the registration system under which the volunteer health practitioner was registered; provided, however, that nothing in this part shall authorize any volunteer health practitioner's participation as a member of the Tennessee consolidated retirement system, unless the practitioner was a member at the time the emergency was declared.

Credits
2007 Pub.Acts, c. 579, § 12.

 

§ 58-2-812. Medical workers' compensation benefits

Notwithstanding § 8-42-101(3)(B) concerning workers' compensation coverage of certain state employees, a volunteer health practitioner who is providing health services in this state pursuant to this part, or who is traveling to or from this state to provide such services, and who is not covered by workers' compensation insurance, shall be considered an employee of this state for purposes of any medical workers' compensation benefits concerning any injury incurred in traveling or providing the services. Benefits for volunteer health practitioners are limited to those medical benefits provided to state employees under the laws of this state.

Credits
2007 Pub.Acts, c. 579, § 13.

 

§ 58-2-813. Construction and application of part

In applying and construing this part, consideration shall be given to the need to promote uniformity of the law with respect to its subject matter among states that enact it.

Credits
2007 Pub.Acts, c. 579, § 14.

 



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