Law:Title 4. Health Facilities. Subtitle B. Licensing Of Health Facilities from Chapter 255. Quality Assurance Early Warning System For Long-term Care Facilities; Rapid Response Teams (Texas)

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Subtitle B. Licensing Of Health Facilities

Contents

Chapter 255. Quality Assurance Early Warning System For Long-term Care Facilities; Rapid Response Teams

Section  255.001.  Definitions.

In this chapter:

(1)  "Department" means the Department of Aging and Disability Services.

(2)  "Long-term care facility" means a nursing institution, an assisted living facility, or an intermediate care facility for the mentally retarded licensed under Chapter 242, 247, or 252, or certified under Chapter 32, Human Resources Code.

(3)  "Quality-of-care monitor" means a registered nurse, pharmacist, or nutritionist who:

(A)  is employed by the department;

(B)  is trained and experienced in long-term care facility regulation, standards of practice in long-term care, and evaluation of patient care; and

(C)  functions independently of other divisions of the department.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1284, Sec. 7.03, eff. June 15, 2001.

Amended by:

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 837, Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2005.



Section  255.002.  Early Warning System.

The department shall establish an early warning system to detect conditions that could be detrimental to the health, safety, and welfare of residents. The early warning system shall include analysis of financial and quality-of-care indicators that would predict the need for the department to take action.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1284, Sec. 7.03, eff. June 15, 2001.



Section  255.003.  Quality-of-care Monitors.

(a) The department shall establish regional offices with one or more quality-of-care monitors, based on the number of long-term care facilities in the region, to monitor the facilities in the region on a regular, aperiodic basis, including nights, evenings, weekends, and holidays.  A monitoring visit conducted under this chapter may be announced or unannounced.

(b)  Priority for monitoring visits shall be given to long-term care facilities with a history of patient care deficiencies.

(c)  Quality-of-care monitors may not be deployed by the department as a part of the regional survey team in the conduct of routine, scheduled surveys.

(d)  A quality-of-care monitor may not interfere with, impede, or otherwise adversely affect the performance of the duties of a surveyor, inspector, or investigator of the department.

(e)  Quality-of-care monitors shall assess:

(1)  the overall quality of life in the long-term care facility; and

(2)  specific conditions in the facility directly related to patient care.

(f)  The quality-of-care monitor shall include in a monitoring visit:

(1)  observation of the care and services rendered to residents; and

(2)  formal and informal interviews with residents, family members, facility staff, resident guests, volunteers, other regulatory staff, and representatives of a human rights advocacy committee.

(g)  The identity of a resident or a family member of a resident interviewed by a quality-of-care monitor as provided by Subsection (f)(2) shall remain confidential and may not be disclosed to any person under any other provision of this section.

(h)  The findings of a monitoring visit, both positive and negative, shall be provided orally and in writing to the long-term care facility administrator or, in the absence of the facility administrator, to the administrator on duty or the director of nursing.

(i)  The quality-of-care monitor may recommend to the long-term care facility administrator procedural and policy changes and staff training to improve the care or quality of life of facility residents.

(j)  Conditions observed by the quality-of-care monitor that create an immediate threat to the health or safety of a resident shall be reported immediately to the regional office supervisor for appropriate action and, as appropriate or as required by law, to law enforcement, adult protective services, other divisions of the department, or other responsible agencies.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1284, Sec. 7.03, eff. June 15, 2001.

Amended by:

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 837, Sec. 2, eff. September 1, 2005.



Section  255.004.  Rapid Response Teams.

(a) The department shall create rapid response teams composed of health care experts that can visit long-term care facilities identified through the department's early warning system.

(b)  Rapid response teams may visit long-term care facilities that request the department's assistance. A visit under this subsection may not occur before the 60th day after the date of an exit interview following an annual or follow-up survey or inspection.

(c)  The rapid response teams may not be deployed for the purpose of helping a long-term care facility prepare for a regular inspection or survey conducted under Chapter 242, 247, or 252 or in accordance with Chapter 32, Human Resources Code.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1284, Sec. 7.03, eff. June 15, 2001.



Section  255.005.  Report.

The department shall assess and evaluate the effectiveness of the quality assurance early warning system and shall report its findings annually to the governor, the lieutenant governor, and the speaker of the house of representatives.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1284, Sec. 7.03, eff. June 15, 2001.


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