No time to wait: Commandeering healthcare facilities in the age of COVID-19
Keywords:pandemic, hospitals, emergency takings power
In this editorial, we address the urgent need to rapidly expand hospital and ICU capacity during the COVID-19 pandemic and future infectious disease outbreaks. As a remedy to this problem currently plaguing many US municipalities, we discuss states' Emergency Takings Power, an alternative to eminent domain proceedings that allows the immediate commandeering of vacant hospitals without exorbitant costs or the need to litigate fair market price up front. We briefly describe the legal basis for emergency takings power and how states can empower local municipalities to act on that power during public health emergencies.
Witte G, Weiner R: Sun Belt hospitals are feeling the strain from virus’ surge—and bracing for worse. Washington Post. Available at https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/coronavirus-hospitals- florida-texas-arizona-california/2020/07/16/dea0ed7a-c79b-11ea-8ffe-372be8d82298_story.html. Published July 16, 2020. Accessed July 21, 2020.
Savini D: Shuttered Blue Island Hospital To Reopen For COVID-19 Patients. Available at: https://chicago.cbslocal.com/2020/04/07/ shuttered-blue-island-hospital-to-reopen-for-covid-19-patients/ Published April 7, 2020. Accessed August 11, 2020.
Feldman N: Coronavirus-Stricken Cities Have Empty Hospitals, But Reopening Them Is Difficult. NPR.org. Available at: https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2020/04/14/ 834026599/coronavirus-stricken-cities-have-empty-hospitals-but-reopening-them-is-difficult Published April 14, 2020. Accessed July 21, 2020.
Lacy A: A Private Equity Baron Sitting on an Empty Philadelphia Hospital Is in Line for Huge Tax Gift in the Covid-19 Stimulus. The Intercept. https://theintercept.com/2020/04/01/philadelphia-hahnemann-hospital-joel-freedman/ Published April 1, 2020. Accessed July 21, 2020.
Whyy NF: Pandemic-Stricken Cities Have Empty Hospitals, But Reopening Them Is Difficult. Kaiser Health News. Available at: https://khn.org/news/coronavirus-pandemic-stricken-cities-abandoned-hospitals-conversion-reopening/ Published April 2, 2020. Accessed October 12, 2020.
US v. Russell: US 80, 623 (Supreme Court of the United States 1871).
Preseault v. ICC. US 494, 1 (Supreme Court 1990).
Thomson Reuters. 50 State Statutory Surveys: Real Property: Eminent Domain, Procedures for Acquisition of Property. 2020.
Beletsky L, Johnson S: Fighting the Coronavirus & Protecting the Unhoused: Policies & Polling. Social Science Research Network; 2020. Available at: https://papers.ssrn.com/abstract=3608300 Accessed July 29, 2020.
US v. Dow: US 357, 17 (Supreme Court of the United States 1958).
City of Chicago v. Peck. Ill. App. 98, 434 (1901).
Thomas Reuters. Determination of Compensation (Statutes).; 2019.
Lee BA: Emergency Takings. Mich L Rev. 2015; 114: 391.
Allison v. Cash. Kentucky 143, 679 (1911).
Beckwith v. Sturtevant. Connecticut 52, 158 (1875).
Copyright 2007-2023, Weston Medical Publishing, LLC and Journal of Emergency Management. All Rights Reserved