McConnell’s Proposed Immunity Shield Threatens Nursing Home Accountability – Nina Kohn Advocates for Those Most at Risk

Nina Kohn (‘03), Professor of Law at Syracuse University College of Law and a faculty affiliate with the Syracuse University Aging Studies Institute, was consulted for an article in Mother Jones regarding the dangers of McConnell’s proposed nursing home liability shield in the wake of the extreme coronavirus toll on elderly living in skilled nursing care facilities (“COVID-19 Is Tearing Through Nursing Homes. Mitch McConnell Wants to Give Their Owners Legal Immunity.” Aug. 4). “This act is not about responding to COVID-19. It’s about using COVID-19 as a screen to eviscerate a system of public accountability that average individuals in this country rely on, but which certainly can limit corporate profitability.” In addition to moving coronavirus related-lawsuits to federal court and raising the standard of proof plaintiffs must meet, the proposed legislation would narrow the definition of gross negligence so that, Nina says, it is “almost impossible to satisfy.”