Health Center Volunteer Health Providers
U.S. Congress. (2016). Health Center Volunteer Health Providers (VHP).
The 21st Century Cures Act (Pub. L. 114-255) extended liability protections to Volunteer Health Professionals (VHPs) for the performance of medical, surgical, dental, and related functions at health centers. For liability protections to apply under section 224(q) of the Public Health Service Act (42 U.S.C. § 233(q)), the volunteer must be a health care professional who is licensed or certified to provide clinical services. This would include Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs) and Medical Assistants (MAs) who are licensed or certified. Volunteers who are not licensed or certified are not eligible for VHP coverage. VHPs are not automatically eligible for liability protections under the Health Center FTCA Program. Deemed health centers must apply for such protections for their individual volunteers through a VHP deeming sponsorship application. The deemed health center must submit to HRSA and receive approval of a VHP deeming sponsorship application for each individual volunteer. (Access https://bphc.hrsa.gov/sites/default/files/bphc/ftca/pdf/pal-2020-03.pdf for more information.)