Virginia Regulatory Town Hall
Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services
State Board of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services
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10/31/19  12:58 pm
Commenter: Emily Eagle, Walll Residences

Response to Licensing Regulations

I am following up today to share with you the response I have made on the NEW Proposed Licensing Regulation Revision that is open for public comment for Wall Residences. Feel free to use any of my comments in your response. I recommend you take a look at the regulations.


Comments on DBHDS Office of Licensing: Response to Periodic Review: NEW General Chapter

106-180: Governance. This entire section is too prescriptive and should be removed. It is moving into the business operations of the agency. There may be unintended consequences for individuals who become members of a Board of Directors. Section 190 fills the need for most of what Licensing is looking for in the development of this section.

106-240 B.3. “The policy shall require that the provider conduct background checks on a minimum of 20% of all existing employees annually”. While it is a good idea the cost to use Fieldprint for this many individuals annually would be significant adding administrative cost through the background itself and the time employees would have to take to travel to Fieldprint locations. If this is required companies should be allowed to use online resources to conduct a background check from the office. If a new charge is discovered using one of those systems then the employee could be sent to Fieldprint for the complete background check.

106-250 A.9. Some employees live in adjoining states or are in the military and would not have a Virginia Driver’s License.

106-260 A.9. Same as 250 A.9.

106-300 B.1.c. Medication Administration is frequently taught over the course of a couple of weeks as the nurse has scheduled. It may be impossible to get this done within 7 days for all employees. If licensing recognizes that the staff person would not be involved in Medication Administration until the course is complete, which goes back to “commensurate with their function or job-specific duties” this could work, but this would be up to interpretation by the specialist. It is the same for many Crisis management programs like TOVA, CPI, CIT etc. and may depend upon when the trainer is available.

106-390 C. “Service locations shall not be within the provider’s personal residence with the exception of sponsored residential services.” This type of language was attempted within the Emergency Regulations under Group Homes which would have ended hundreds of group homes serving individuals with Developmental Disabilities. This language has the potential to do the same thing. This needs to be removed from this section and if needed put in the “Disability Specific” Sections or “Service Specific” sections as needed.

106-550. Privacy. 5. “A prohibition of staff visitors.” This needs to be removed and placed in service specific chapters. This does not work at all for sponsored residential or small provider operated group homes. Living life in a family/home like setting is part of the service and a part of how people develop relationships.

106-560 B. 1. “The check of the employee’s or contractors’ driving record shall occur at the time of employment and annually thereafter.” Licensing should be aware this is an additional expense that begins to add up, like the criminal checks, without any of this being added to the Rate Models. It will likely be passed on to employees, who are already making less than a living wage in many areas/programs. It will not help our DSP shortage. Most agencies have requirements that have to be met by their insurance companies already in this area, but they do not require new DMV checks or 100% of employees. If this is required consider moving it to 20% or less annually.

560 A.4. Can there be provisions included related to individual choice when riding in the back seat?

560 C.4. This does not make sense for a sponsored provider. How would this be enforced?

106-690 C. Building and Grounds. Outdoor Recreation Space. What does this mean for services in an apartment complex in larger urban areas? Perhaps this is service specific as well?

106-710. Traffic Pattern. This needs to be service specific.

106-720 C. Lighting in halls shall be adequate and shall be continuous at night. This is beginning to move over into choice of individuals living in the service and should be left up to the individual and team serving the individual as to whether or not this is needed. Again, it seems there may have been some specific services in mind when this was written, but it is not applicable to all services. Same for E.

106-790 Swimming Pools. Most licensing specialists are already following local code. We are not certain what is attempting to be accomplished here.

106-810 4. a. “Documented, current MOU or MOA or other arrangement (e.g. hotel accommodation) with local/regional sites that could function as evacuation location or stop-over points.” An MOU or MOA is not needed and would not be upheld in a true regional emergency like a hurricane or massive fires. It would be first come first served. Having a realistic plan in place for where individuals and staff would go for safety seems more realistic.

106-820 A. Remove “landline”

CommentID: 76807