A new bill introduced Tuesday by House Armed Services Committee member Jackie Speier (D-Calif.) would allow military personnel to sue DOD for damages relating to injury or death in medical malpractice cases, according to a Military Times report Wednesday.
Speier, chairwoman of the Military Personnel subcommittee, introduced the “Sergeant First Class Richard Stayskal Military Medical Accountability Act” in honor of the soldier’s fight against current policy barring troops from suing the government for medical malpractice.
Stayskal is fighting terminal lung cancer that went undiagnosed for years by military doctors, and now he isn’t expected to survive the disease.
The bill would not apply to past malpractice cases, nor would it apply to mistakes made outside military medical facilities or clinics, whether in combat, at battalion aid stations or on ships.
Speier said the legislation is needed because the federal government has “let service members down” in depriving them of legal rights.
Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Sean Galbreath