Whereas, The deferred operation of this act would tend to defeat its purpose, which is to provide forthwith regulations for dementia special care units in long-term care facilities, therefore it is hereby declared to be an emergency law, necessary for the immediate preservation of the public health.
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 71A½ the following section:-
Section 71C. (a) The department, in consultation with the Alzheimer's Disease and Related Disorders Association, Massachusetts/New Hampshire Chapter, Inc. and representatives from the nursing home provider community shall promulgate regulations to establish minimum standards for dementia special care units to ensure safety and quality of services including:
(1) dementia-specific training for all direct care workers, activities directors and supervisors of direct care workers in both traditional nursing homes and dementia special care units;
(2) activities programs in dementia special care units that provide dementia-specific activities; and
(3) guidelines for dementia special care unit physical design including, but not limited, to anti-wandering methods and promoting a therapeutic environment.
(b) 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 shall meet the standards set forth under this section in order to provide those services. A nursing home that operates a dementia special care unit shall disclose to consumers and to the department the specialized services the dementia special care unit provides for patients affected by alzheimer's and related dementias.
(c) A licensee of the department under section 71 shall provide dementia-specific training for direct care workers, activities directors and supervisors of direct care workers in a facility that does not hold itself out to the public or advertise that it is a provider of specialized services and programming for dementia special care units in long-term care facilities.
SECTION 2. Nothing in the regulations promulgated by the department of public health under section 71C of chapter 111 of the General Laws shall be presumed to require a higher reimbursement rate for licensees under section 71 of said chapter 111.
SECTION 3. The department of public health shall promulgate its initial regulations to implement section 71C of chapter 111 of the General Laws not later than April 1, 2013.
Approved, July 8, 2012.