For Immediate Release: May 15, 2007
Senator Susan Paddack
Paddack Applauds Gov. for Signing Bill Protecting Charitable
Health Care Providers
Sen. Susan Paddack said she was extremely pleased that Gov.
Brad Henry signed Senate Bill 930 into law. The tort reform
bill would protect health care providers who do charity work.
Paddack, D-Ada, was principal author of SB 930.
“There are doctors throughout this state who want to help
fill that need for volunteer services, but may hesitate to do
so because of the fear of becoming the target of a frivolous
lawsuit,” Paddack said. “SB 930 will give them the
protection they need.”
Under SB 930, health care providers will have the same legal
protection as volunteer firefighters and medical students currently
covered by the Governmental Tort Claims Act.
“Access to healthcare and lawsuit reform have intersected
with this legislation which will help address both of these
issues,” Paddack said. “Oklahoma is currently ranked
fourth in the nation in terms of the percentage of population
without insurance. There are currently not enough free-clinics
to help these individuals who often use emergency rooms as their
primary source for health care. It is causing an incredible
strain on ER’s.”
According to the organization Health Alliance for the Uninsured,
a study of emergency rooms in Oklahoma County showed that 53
percent of ER visits are for non-emergency symptoms. More than
106,000 of those visits were by patients who were uninsured
or underinsured—half were patients younger than 20.
“The need for this tort protection and the resulting access
to health care it will provide is very real. I want to thank
my House author, Rep. Doug Cox, the Legislature and Governor
Henry for their work to get this bill through the process.”
SB 930 will take effect on November 1, 2007.
For more information contact:
Senator Paddack's Office: (405) 521-5541