S.B. No. 1055

relating to alternative methods of satisfying certain licensing requirements for assisted living facilities and to consumer choice for assisted living facilities. BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS: SECTION 1. Subchapter B, Chapter 247, Health and Safety Code, is amended by adding Section 247.032 to read as follows: Sec. 247.032. ACCREDITATION SURVEY TO SATISFY INSPECTION REQUIREMENTS. (a) In this section, "accreditation commission" means the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities or the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations. (b) The department shall accept an accreditation survey from an accreditation commission for an assisted living facility instead of an inspection under Section 247.023 or an annual inspection or survey conducted under the authority of Section 247.027, but only if: (1) the accreditation commission's standards meet or exceed the requirements for licensing of the executive commissioner of the Health and Human Services Commission for an assisted living facility; (2) the accreditation commission maintains an inspection or survey program that, for each assisted living facility, meets the department's applicable minimum standards as confirmed by the executive commissioner of the Health and Human Services Commission; (3) the accreditation commission conducts an on-site inspection or survey of the facility at least as often as required by Section 247.023 or 247.027 and in accordance with the department's minimum standards; (4) the assisted living facility submits to the department a copy of its required accreditation reports to the accreditation commission in addition to the application, the fee, and any report required for renewal of a license; (5) the inspection or survey results are available for public inspection to the same extent that the results of an investigation or survey conducted under Section 247.023 or 247.027 are available for public inspection; and (6) the department ensures that the accreditation commission has taken reasonable precautions to protect the confidentiality of personally identifiable information concerning the residents of the assisted living facility. (c) The department shall coordinate its licensing activities with each of the accreditation commissions. (d) Except as specifically provided by this section, this section does not limit the department in performing any power or duty under this chapter or inspection authorized by Section 247.027, including taking appropriate action relating to an assisted living facility, such as suspending or revoking a license, investigating an allegation of abuse, exploitation, or neglect or another complaint, assessing an administrative penalty, or closing the facility. (e) This section does not require an assisted living facility to obtain accreditation from an accreditation commission. SECTION 2. Subchapter D, Chapter 247, Health and Safety Code, is amended by adding Section 247.069 to read as follows: Sec. 247.069. CONSUMER CHOICE FOR ASSISTED LIVING IN COMMUNITY CARE PROGRAMS. The community based alternatives program and the residential care programs, which provide an assisted living option to consumers, shall provide a consumer the opportunity to choose an assisted living facility that meets the department's licensing standards relating to facility construction without regard to the number of units in the facility, if: (1) consumers are advised of all other community care options; and (2) the facility: (A) has never been licensed by the department as anything other than an assisted living facility; (B) is not physically connected to a skilled nursing facility; (C) was constructed before September 1, 2005; and (D) otherwise meets all other community care program standards. SECTION 3. (a) The Health and Human Services Commission shall convene a workgroup composed of providers, consumer advocates, building inspectors, fire marshals, and other individuals as appropriate to study state laws relating to the delivery of personal care services to four or more persons who are unrelated to the proprietor in settings that are not licensed as assisted living facilities, but are instead settings where one or more residents receive personal care services through one or more home and community support services agencies. The purpose of the study is to perform a comprehensive review of the changing environment in the personal care services delivery system to determine if changes in state licensing and regulation are warranted, and if so, what changes should be considered. The workgroup shall consider, among other things: (1) state licensing laws; (2) the nature, extent, and differences of consumer needs and preferences; (3) the qualifications of persons authorized to provide personal care services; and (4) the settings in which personal care services are provided, including the life safety codes applicable to those settings. (b) Not later than December 1, 2006, the workgroup, with the assistance of the Health and Human Services Commission, shall prepare and deliver a report and make recommendations on the issues studied to the governor, the lieutenant governor, and the speaker of the house of representatives. (c) This section expires February 1, 2007. SECTION 4. Not later than June 1, 2007, the Department of Aging and Disability Services shall accept an accreditation survey and implement the procedures required by Section 247.032, Health and Safety Code, as added by this Act. SECTION 5. This Act takes effect September 1, 2005.
______________________________ ______________________________ President of the Senate Speaker of the House
I hereby certify that S.B. No. 1055 passed the Senate on April 26, 2005, by the following vote: Yeas 31, Nays 0; and that the Senate concurred in House amendments on May 29, 2005, by the following vote: Yeas 31, Nays 0. ______________________________ Secretary of the Senate I hereby certify that S.B. No. 1055 passed the House, with amendments, on May 25, 2005, by a non-record vote. ______________________________ Chief Clerk of the House Approved: ______________________________ Date ______________________________ Governor