Virginia Regulatory Town Hall
Department of Social Services
State Board of Social Services
Standards for Licensed Assisted Living Facilities [22 VAC 40 ‑ 73]
Action Update Standards to Add Appeal Process for Discharges
Stage Fast-Track
Comment Period Ended on 9/27/2023
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9/25/23  1:35 pm
Commenter: Michael Schuster, Northern Virginia Aging Network

Assisted Living Facility Residents Need Due Process Protections Now

I have been an advocate for residents of long-term care facilities for over thirty years - both in the District of Columbia and now in Virginia. As the attorney for the D.C. Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program (LTCOP) (until 1995), I wrote the District of Columbia Nursing Homes and Community Residence Facilities Protections Act, granting assisted living facility ( called community facilities (CRFs) in D.C.) residents extensive due process rights in involuntary discharge situations, as well as authorizing the long-term ombudsman to request hearings on behalf of residents. See, D.C. Code secs. 44-1000.01, et seq.

I represented both the LTCO and CRF residents in many administrative hearings dealing with involuntary discharge. 

ALF residents in Virginia should be accorded the same due process rights as nursing home residents and tenants in the community. Often these hearings are the only forum in which residents can raise quality of care issues, which are usually the real basis for an involuntary discharge. The District of Columbia more extensive law (than the proposed rule) has stood the test of time - over thirty years. Assisted Living Facilities (i.e., Community Residence Facilities in D.C.) - large and small -  have been able to adapt to the law, and residents have been protected. There is no legitimate reason to delay the adoption of this proposed rule. 

CommentID: 220395