During busy periods of crisis as well as post-COVID recovery, we provide practical legal support to health and social care businesses. We can also meet the demands of very high claims numbers with ease, ensuring every COVID-19 case is handled sensitively and with consistency of service. With a range of legal solutions combined with client collaboration we will focus on delivering the best outcome possible.
BLM COVID Assist provides a virtual team to work side-by-side with healthcare businesses and professionals who find themselves impacted by the global coronavirus outbreak. Government COVID-19 guidance to the health and care sector has evolved over time and has changed frequently with the advice varying from region to region. Our multi-discipline, cross-jurisdictional COVID Assist team provides practical advice on the legal challenges arising as a consequence of the pandemic and lockdowns, as well as suggesting future strategies to minimise further impact and adopt revised operating models in the following areas.
COVID 19 Claims – EL, PL and medical malpractice
Claims may arise from a wide number of potential claimants including care home residents and generally those in receipt of care, visitors and employees, including agency workers. The types of claims will include:
- Fatal and living claims for COVID-19 against medical professionals and care providers
- Long COVID claims
- Breaches of Articles of the Human Rights Act 1998
- Claims for delays in diagnosis of conditions
- Allegations of failure to follow up patients appropriately following treatment or procedures performed in the private healthcare sector
- Breaches of Deprivation of Liberty
- Stress claims and/or claims generally affecting the mental health of medical professionals and care providers.
Breach of Duty
The steps that will be deemed reasonable to have been taken will in part depend on the government guidance in place at the time. BLM have kept a detailed record of this advice to support the defence of claims and we will use this resource where appropriate to challenge allegations in relation to the standard of care provided both in terms of a claim and in a regulatory context.
COVID-19 diagnosis must be proved and then a claimant will have to prove they contracted the condition as a result of a breach of duty. We will do all we can to challenge claims to achieve the best possible outcome possible for organisations and individuals alike.
Policy and Coverage Issues
We will work with you to ensure that we advise you on any policy coverage issues and its impact.
Regulatory Investigations, Prosecutions and Inquests
Our dedicated Healthcare and Regulatory teams will defend any investigations and prosecutions from regulators in the health and care sectors arising from or associated with COVID-19. We also provide expert advice and representation at Inquests.
Fraud and exaggeration
We consider there is a risk of fraud or exaggeration in COVID-19 related claims. The BLM COVID Assist team will ensure that robust fraud controls are in place for identification, investigation and defence of fraudulent claims.
Our specialist employment lawyers are currently working with employers in the health and care sector to help them navigate the challenges caused by COVID-19. We will help ensure the workplace is ‘COVID-secure’, meeting the Government’s latest health and safety guidance; help you handle anxieties amongst staff surrounding a return to the workplace and deal with any reluctance/ refusal to be vaccinated and/or tested. We can also help with staff restructuring exercises to adapt to new trading conditions including the consideration of redundancy or changes to employment Terms and Conditions.
It is likely that commercial disputes will arise as a result of COVID-19 and the impact it will have on your contractual relationships.We will explain the options available to deal with supplier performance reviews, delayed and cancelled contracts, and advise on the options for funding a claim.
If COVID-19 has forced health and care business to rethink business structures, growth or contraction, our specialist corporate and commercial lawyers can help explore the options available, including acquisition or disposal of companies or key assets, group restructures and reviews of corporate constitutional documents.
Whether you are a company director or a creditor, our specialist team can assist on a range of insolvency issues arising out of COVID-19 including Liquidations, Administrations, Receiverships, Voluntary Arrangements and Bankruptcy.
For up to the minute news and insights on COVID-19 visit our Coronavirus Hub
Who to contact