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| less than a minute read

Court Initially Denies Illinois Nursing Home's State and Federal Immunity Defense in COVID-19 Negligence Suit

An Illinois nursing home was sued by the relatives of a resident who died from COVID-19 alleging that the home did not take steps to protect the resident from health care workers who had tested positive for the virus. There were 44 confirmed cases of COVID at the home and 12 confirmed deaths. The home had asserted that it was immune from liability based on an Executive Order (Order) from Illinois Governor Jay Pritzker as well as the federal Public Readiness and Emergency Preparedness Act (PREP Act). The home's motion to have the case dismissed on the pleadings was denied because there were insufficient facts presented to date to establish whether the home had taken sufficient steps to "render assistance" under the immunity Order or to provide the required "counter measures" under the PREP Act as required in order to support its civil immunity claims. 

"Even if the parties agreed that Westchester took some countermeasures somewhere in the facility, that wouldn't be 'sufficient to invoke the [PREP] Act as to all claims that arise in that facility,'" the order states. "Take, for instance, a nursing home that distributed N-95 masks but failed to administer vaccines. The facility would be hard-pressed to argue that it's immunized from vaccine-related claims because it distributed N-95s. [The PREP Act's] immunity provision requires a causal connection between the injury and the use or administration of covered countermeasures".


health care, covid-19, covid litigation