Standards for Licensed Assisted Living Facilities
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I have reviewed the proposed regulation on a preliminary basis. While I reserve the right to take action under the Administrative Process Act as the regulation moves forward, I approve the publication of this proposed regulation to the next stage for the purpose of soliciting public comment. Specifically, I would like public comment on and Agency consideration of two possible changes.
First, whether assisted living facilities should be required to have Internet capability for the use of residents. Currently, assisted living facilities are required to provide residents access to a telephone, but these regulations have not been changed for many years. The Internet has become such an integral part of everyday life that it may be time to update these regulations to require assisted living facilities in Virginia to have Internet capability. The benefits to resident quality of life could be substantial; however, more information about both the costs and the benefits is needed. I would like the Agency to consider the costs and benefits of requiring Internet capability at assited living facilities, and I would like public comment on the same. Specific information about cost issues should be included in any public comment that argues the costs of requiring Internet capability are prohibitive.
Second, the proposed regulation amends rules regarding direct care staff based on the number per floor, rather than per unit. I would like public comment on and Agency consideration of any alternative ways to implement a common sense requirement based either on the number of residents or some more flexible measure since assisted living facilities vary in their physical design and space.