Coronavirus Act 2020

Publication Date:January 01, 2020
 
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Coronavirus Act 2020

2020 Chapter 7

An Act to make provision in connection with coronavirus; and for connected purposes.

[25 March 2020]

Be it enacted by the Queen’s most Excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and Commons, in this present Parliament assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:—

1 Main provisions

PART 1

Main provisions

Interpretation

Interpretation

S-1 Meaning of “coronavirus” and related terminology

1 Meaning of “coronavirus” and related terminology

(1) In this Act—

“coronavirus” means severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2);

“coronavirus disease” means COVID-19 (the official designation of the disease which can be caused by coronavirus).

(2) A reference in this Act to infection or contamination, however expressed, is a reference to infection or contamination with coronavirus.

(3) But a reference in this Act to persons infected by coronavirus, however expressed, does not (unless a contrary intention appears) include persons who have been infected but are clear of coronavirus (unless re-infected).

Emergency registration of health professionals

Emergency registration of health professionals

S-2 Emergency registration of nurses and other health and care professionals

2 Emergency registration of nurses and other health and care professionals

Schedule 1 contains temporary modifications of—

(a) the Nursing and Midwifery Order 2001 ( S.I. 2002/253), and

(b) the Health Professions Order 2001 ( S.I. 2002/254).

S-3 Emergency arrangements concerning medical practitioners: Wales

3 Emergency arrangements concerning medical practitioners: Wales

Schedule 2 contains temporary modifications of—

(a) the National Health Service (Performers Lists) (Wales) Regulations 2004 ( S.I. 2004/1020 (W. 117)), and

(b) the National Health Service (General Medical Services Contracts) (Wales) Regulations 2004 ( S.I. 2004/478 (W. 48)).

S-4 Emergency arrangements concerning medical practitioners: Scotland

4 Emergency arrangements concerning medical practitioners: Scotland

Schedule 3 contains temporary modifications of—

(a) the National Health Service (Primary Medical Services Performers Lists) (Scotland) Regulations 2004 ( S.S.I. 2004/114),

(b) the National Health Service (General Medical Services Contracts (Scotland) Regulations 2018 ( S.S.I. 2018/66), and

(c) the National Health Service (Primary Medical Services Section 17C Arrangements) (Scotland) Regulations 2018 ( S.S.I. 2018/67).

S-5 Emergency registration of and extension of prescribing powers for pharmaceutical chemists: Northern Ireland

5 Emergency registration of and extension of prescribing powers for pharmaceutical chemists: Northern Ireland

Schedule 4 contains temporary modifications of the Pharmacy (Northern Ireland) Order 1976 ( S.I. 1976/1213 (N.I. 22)).

Temporary registration of social workers

Temporary registration of social workers

S-6 Emergency registration of social workers: England and Wales

6 Emergency registration of social workers: England and Wales

Schedule 5 contains temporary modifications of—

(a) the Social Workers Regulations 2018 ( S.I. 2018/893), and

(b) the Regulation and Inspection of Social Care (Wales) Act 2016 (anaw 2).

S-7 Temporary registration of social workers: Scotland

7 Temporary registration of social workers: Scotland

Schedule 6 contains temporary modifications of—

(a) the Regulation of Care (Scotland) Act 2001 (asp 8), and

(b) the Registration of Social Workers and Social Service Workers in Care Services (Scotland) Regulations 2013 ( S.S.I. 2013/227).

Emergency volunteers

Emergency volunteers

S-8 Emergency volunteering leave

8 Emergency volunteering leave

Schedule 7 makes provision for emergency volunteering leave.

S-9 Compensation for emergency volunteers

9 Compensation for emergency volunteers

(1) The Secretary of State must make arrangements for making payments to emergency volunteers by way of compensation—

(a)

for loss of earnings;

(b)

for travelling and subsistence.

(2) A person is entitled, in respect of acting as an emergency volunteer, to receive payments by way of compensation in accordance with arrangements made under this section.

(3) But a person is entitled to receive payments by way of compensation for loss of earnings only if, in consequence of acting as an emergency volunteer, the person has suffered a loss of earnings that the person would otherwise not have suffered.

(4) The arrangements made under subsection (1) may include—

(a)

conditions that a person must satisfy in order to be entitled to receive payment by way of compensation;

(b)

different provision for different cases;

(c)

provision about the procedure for making a claim;

(d)

provision about how the amount a person is entitled to claim is to be determined;

(e)

provision about the manner in which payments are to be made by the Secretary of State;

(f)

provision specifying limits on the amount that a person is entitled to claim.

(5) Sums required for the payment of compensation in accordance with this section are to be provided by the Secretary of State out of money provided by Parliament.

(6) The reference in subsection (1)(b) to payments by way of compensation for subsistence includes a reference to vouchers and other benefits which may be used to pay for subsistence, whether or not their use is subject to any limitations.

(7) The Secretary of State must—

(a)

publish arrangements made under this section in such manner as the Secretary of State considers appropriate, and

(b)

lay before Parliament a statement about arrangements made under this section, as soon as reasonably practicable after they are made.

(8) In this section a person is an “emergency volunteer” if an appropriate authority certifies that the person—

(a)

has been approved by the authority as an emergency volunteer in health or social care, and

(b)

has acted as an emergency volunteer in health or social care for a period for which emergency volunteering leave could have been taken (whether or not the person is entitled to take, or actually took, emergency volunteering leave).

(9) In this section “appropriate authority”, “emergency volunteering leave” and “health or social care” have the same meaning as in Schedule 7 (see paragraphs 4 and 31 of that Schedule).

Mental health and mental capacity

Mental health and mental capacity

S-10 Temporary modification of mental health and mental capacity legislation

10 Temporary modification of mental health and mental capacity legislation

(1) Schedule 8 contains temporary modifications of the Mental Health Act 1983, and related provision.

(2) Schedule 9 contains temporary modifications of the Mental Health (Care and Treatment) (Scotland) Act 2003 (asp 13), the Criminal Procedure (Scotland) Act 1995 and related subordinate legislation.

(3) Schedule 10 contains temporary modifications of the Mental Health (Northern Ireland) Order 1986 ( S.I. 1986/595 (N.I. 4)), and related provision.

(4) Schedule 11 contains temporary modifications of the Mental Capacity Act (Northern Ireland) 2016 (c. 18 (N.I.)), and related provision.

Health service indemnification

Health service indemnification

S-11 Indemnity for health service activity: England and Wales

11 Indemnity for health service activity: England and Wales

(1) The appropriate authority may—

(a)

indemnify a person in respect of a qualifying liability incurred by the person, or

(b)

make arrangements for a person to be indemnified, in respect of a qualifying liability incurred by the person, by an authorised person.

(2) References in this section to a qualifying liability are to a liability in tort, in respect of or consequent on death, personal injury or loss, arising out of or in connection with a breach of a duty of care owed in connection with the provision, after the coming into force of this section, of a relevant service.

(3) “Relevant service” means a service which is provided by a person as part of the health service and which—

(a)

relates to—

(i) caring for or treating a person who has, or is suspected of having, coronavirus disease, whether or not in respect of that disease,

(ii) caring for or treating a person (other than a person within sub-paragraph (i)) who has been, or is suspected of being, infected or contaminated, in respect of that infection or contamination or suspected infection or contamination, or

(iii) diagnosing or determining whether a person has been infected or contaminated,

(b)

relates to diagnosis, care or treatment and is provided in consequence of another person who usually provides such a service (other than one within paragraph (a)) as part of the health service being unable to do so in consequence of providing a service within paragraph (a), or

(c)

relates to diagnosis, care or treatment and is provided in consequence of another person who usually provides such a service as part of the health service being unable to do so because of a reason relating to coronavirus.

(4) In a case within subsection (1)(a), any question relating to—

(a)

whether a person has incurred a qualifying liability, or

(b)

the amount of any payment by virtue of subsection (1),

is to be determined by the appropriate authority.

(5) In a case within subsection (1)(b)—

(a)

any question relating to whether a person has incurred a qualifying liability is to be determined by the authorised person;

(b)

any question relating to the amount of any payment by virtue of subsection (1) is to be determined by the authorised person in accordance with the arrangements.

(6) Subsection (1) does not apply where arrangements are already in place (whether under an insurance policy or otherwise) for the person to be indemnified in respect of the liability.

(7) In this section—

“the appropriate authority” means—(a) in relation to a relevant service provided as part of the English health service, the Secretary of State;(b) in relation to a relevant service provided as part of the Welsh health service, the Welsh Ministers;

“authorised person” means a person authorised by the appropriate...

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