On the Diagnosis and Treatment Expenses of COVID-19
COVID-19, rather than a purely personal or family affair, affects the public interests and social security. In this regard, the basic diagnosis and treatment of patients suffering from this notifiable infectious disease should be free of charge. The medical and health service (management and compulsory service) is the technical extension and implementation of the government’s infectious disease prevention and control function. Hospitals and Center for Disease Control are not civil subjects. The services they offer do not reflect the three principles of civil law, namely fairness, voluntariness and making compensation for equal value, and the doctor-patient relationship is a civil legal relationship. They are administrative subjects authorized by the prevention and control mechanism under the Law of the People’s Republic of China on the Prevention and Treatment of Infectious Diseases. They provide mandatory administrative management services and the doctor-patient relationship is also an administrative legal relationship. In case of any tort in the process of statutory diagnosis, treatment and control, it is obviously not a civil tort and civil damages should not be sought. An administrative lawsuit, instead of a civil lawsuit, should be filed to safeguard legal rights and seek tort compensation from the state.