From: David Roberts <droberts**At_Symbol_Here**DEPAUW.EDU>
Subject: Re: [DCHAS-L] Question Concerning Insurance and Liability for Undergraduate Lab Accidents
Date: Thu, 7 Apr 2016 09:50:11 -0400
Reply-To: DCHAS-L <DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**MED.CORNELL.EDU>
Message-ID: 604B9C9B-B727-4512-B110-F0F41008EE97**At_Symbol_Here**

I second the statement by Janice. Our University would assume the responsibility on the student, and thus the student is responsible for payment. Had the student been a paid employee of the University, that would be different, but since it was a situation where the student is not being paid (and thus is not a University employee), the cost goes to the student. I did ask our insurance person, and he stated that the University would only be financially responsible if there was proven "negligence" on the part of the University.

With that, another unrelated and totally different scenario entered my mind. It is policy at our University to perform BAC tests on students we feel are overly intoxicated. If they are above a certain threshold (I am not certain the exact number here), we automatically call an ambulance and the student is taken to the hospital for evaluation. The student assumes all costs here, the University does not pay for these rides/evaluations. I feel that while it"s a very different situation it"s a similar outcome.

Hope that helps


> On Apr 7, 2016, at 9:29 AM, Dodge, Janice wrote:
> Hi Dom,
> In Florida, state agencies, including the universities, are also self-insured. Our (State of Florida contracted) worker's comp covers any employee. A student who is not paid to do research is not considered an employee. We let our research faculty know to report any injury to an employee (faculty, post doc, grad student, paid undergrad or paid technician, or a registered volunteer) to us for worker's comp. A DIS student in research (course credit) or any student in a lab class who is injured is covered under his/her own health insurance. All students are required to have health insurance.
> Liability is separate matter. Any student (or employee) can sue for compensation if they believe the university or its employees were negligent. We require that all incidents, regardless of work status and medical need, are reported to us. This protects both the university and the student by providing a record of what happened when everyone's memories are fresh.
> Janice
> Janice Dodge
> Laboratory Safety Officer
> Florida State University
> (850) 644-8916
> -----Original Message-----
> From: DCHAS-L Discussion List [mailto:dchas-l**At_Symbol_Here**] On Behalf Of Casadonte, Dominick
> Sent: Thursday, April 07, 2016 8:29 AM
> To: DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**MED.CORNELL.EDU
> Subject: [DCHAS-L] Question Concerning Insurance and Liability for Undergraduate Lab Accidents
> Hi All,
> A question for the collective wisdom of the list serve
> We had a minor accident a few weeks ago which I mentioned at the ACS symposium on how the accidents at UCLA and Texas Tech are changing the culture of safety at universities. The student was wearing his PPE, everything was done with safety in mind. He suffered only superficial lacerations on his hands. The biggest expense for him was the ambulance ride to the emergency room and being treated (no stitches were needed; I think he was given neosporin and sent home after a 2 hour wait).
> When he contacted his insurance company, they wanted to know if they were the ones who should have to pay for the ambulance ride, etc. He asked the professor overseeing him (the student was doing undergraduate research for course credit, and according to legal, does not fall under workmanå1s compensation). Texas Tech is a å3self-insuredå2 institution. The department has been instructed not to pay, as it would be an admission of liability, and could open the doors for payouts for any minor freshman chemistry lab accident, for example. The university legal would perhaps need to deal with the personå1s insurance company or a lawyer, should the student sue.
> My question to all of you: We are researching how other universities deal with the issue of who pays for medical care for minor accidents. What do your universities do? How do you deal with the financial aspects of accidents? Are your institutions insured? If so, for liability only?
> Liability and damages to infrastructure?
> Many thanks for your responses,
> Dom Casadonte
> Texas Tech University

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