Patient Rights Act of 2019 (S. 1993)
This law was last updated on Sep 17, 2019
S. 1993 would restrict federal funding—including Medicaid, Medicare, and the ACA—for health care entities that perform abortions or those that follow patient orders to withdraw and withhold medical care for the purposes of allowing a patient to die.
The bill would restrict funding to any entity that fails to certify that they “respect all human life and patient rights,” by ensuring that any health care practitioner employed by, or utilizing the facilities or resources of, such entity:
- exercises the same degree of professional skill, care, and diligence to preserve the life and health of any patient as they would render to a patient in a different state of functionality, development, or degree of dependence, including a patient who is:
- newly born;
- born prematurely;
- mentally or physically disabled;
- terminally ill;
- in a persistent vegetative state;
- unresponsive or comatose; or
- otherwise incapable of self-advocacy.
- does not intentionally end the life of, or otherwise harm, any patient by any means or for any reason, including by the use or prescription of any instrument, medicine, drug, or any other substance or device; and
- does not institute a “do-not-resuscitate” order or a similar order with respect to any patient for any reason without obtaining the prior consent of an applicable individual.
Suspected Violation Reports
The Secretary would be required to establish a process by which suspected violations of may be confidentially reported to the Director of the Office for Civil Rights of the Department of Health and Human Services. The Secretary would be required to investigate each report.
The Secretary would be required to establish and maintain a public, online, searchable database of the entities subject to this law, indicating whether each entity is in compliance with the requirements.
Any entity found to violate the requirements of this provision would be ineligible for federal funding described for a period of at least one year. After the one-year period, funding would be reinstated upon a review conducted by the Secretary that confirms that the entity is in compliance with such requirements.
6/26/19 – Introduced; referred to the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions.