Increases the frequency that visitation or inspections of facilities operated or licensed by the office for people with developmental disabilities must be made each year.
TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the mental hygiene law, in relation to increasing the frequency of visitation and inspection of facilities per year
PURPOSE: To increase the number of inspections conducted at facilities operated and/or licensed by the Office of People with Developmental Disabilities from two to three per year and to allow for independent monitors to accompany inspectors during such inspections.
SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS: Section 1 of the bill amends subdivision (al of section 16.11 of the mental hygiene law to increase the number of periodic visitations and inspections of each facility from a minimum of two to a minimum of three, making them unannounced and allowing members of the board of visitors and other independent monitors approved by the Commissioner to accompany inspectors. It also increases the number of unannounced inspections of facilities that have a history of compliance and a record of providing high quality of care from a minimum of one to a minimum of two per year.
Section 2 of the bill provides for an immediate effective date.
EXISTING LAW: Section 16.11(a) provides for a minimum two inspections of each facility per year, at least one of which shall be without prior notice. It also provides that where, in the discretion of the commissioner, an operating certificate has been issued to a program with a history of compliance and a record of providing a high quality of care, the periodic inspection and visitation shall be made at least once during each calendar year without prior notice.
JUSTIFICATION: Caring for our most vulnerable developmentally disabled citizens is an important job carried out by many dedicated workers and agencies throughout the state. In order to insure that individuals are cared for in a manner that meets our highest standards, New York State conducts visitations and inspections of facilities that it operates and/or licenses each year. This bill allows members of a board of visitors and other individuals, if approved by the Commissioner, to accompany inspectors and serve as independent monitors during inspections. It also provides for an extra inspection each year and insures that all inspections are unannounced. This bill will provide additional oversight and transparency to the existing inspection process.
LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: New bill.
FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: To be determined.
EFFECTIVE DATE: Immediately.
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 5791 2011-2012 Regular Sessions IN SENATE June 16, 2011 ___________Introduced by Sen. McDONALD -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Rules AN ACT to amend the mental hygiene law, in relation to increasing the frequency of visitation and inspection of facilities per year THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. Subdivision (a) of section 16.11 of the mental hygiene law, as amended by chapter 214 of the laws of 1993, is amended to read as follows: (a) The commissioner shall provide for the periodic visitation and inspection of each facility. Inspections shall be made as frequently as the commissioner may deem necessary but in any event such inspections shall be made on at least
[two]THREE occasions during each calendar year [, at least one of]which shall be without prior notice, provided, however, that where, in the discretion of the commissioner, an operating certificate has been issued to a program with a history of compliance and a record of providing a high quality of care, the periodic inspection and visitation required by this subdivision shall be made at least [once]TWICE during each calendar year provided such [visit]VISITS shall be without prior notice, PROVIDED, HOWEVER, THAT THE COMMISSIONER PROVIDE NOTICE TO MEMBERS OF THE APPLICABLE BOARD OF VISI- TORS. ANY MEMBER OR MEMBERS OF A BOARD OF VISITORS, APPOINTED PURSUANT TO SECTION 13.33 OF THIS TITLE, AND ANY OTHER INDIVIDUAL OR INDIVIDUALS THE COMMISSIONER AT HIS OR HER DISCRETION APPROVES, MAY ACCOMPANY INSPECTORS DURING THE STATE'S PERIODIC VISITATIONS AND INSPECTIONS CONDUCTED PURSUANT TO THIS SECTION AS INDEPENDENT MONITORS. S 2. This act shall take effect immediately.EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD08759-04-1