HOUSE DOCKET, NO. 620        FILED ON: 1/12/2009

HOUSE  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  No. 537



The Commonwealth of Massachusetts



In the Year Two Thousand Nine





Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:

SECTION 1. Chapter 111 of the General Laws is hereby amended by inserting after section 71B the following section:-

Section 71C. (a) A licensee under section 71 that holds itself out to the public or advertises that it is a provider of specialized services and programming for dementia special care units in long-term care facilities must meet the criteria set forth under this section in order to provide said services.

(b) Notwithstanding any general or special law to the contrary, the department of public health, in consultation with the Alzheimer’s Association of Massachusetts and representatives from the nursing home provider community, shall adopt regulations to establish minimum standards for dementia special care units to ensure safety and quality of services including:

Dementia-specific training for all direct care workers in nursing homes in both traditional and dementia special care units (SCUs).

Activities programs in SCUs that provide dementia-specific activities.

Guidelines for SCU physical design including but not limited to anti-wandering methods and a therapeutic environment.

Nursing homes that operate SCUs must disclose to consumers and the Massachusetts Department of Public health what specialized services the SCU provides for patients affected by Alzheimer’s and related dementias.

SECTION 2.  The department of public health shall adopt its initial regulations to implement this act not later than January 1, 2010.