Sacramento––California legislators will present their RCFE Reform Act bills at policy hearings of the Senate Human Services and Assembly Human Services Committees on Tuesday, April 8, 2014.
The bills, all part of the RCFE Reform Act of 2014, were introduced in response to the scandal at Valley Springs Manor in Castro Valley, where 19 elderly residents were abandoned by the care home owner/licensee, and the scathing investigative reports about the failures in oversight and enforcement regarding California’s Residential Care Facilities for the Elderly.
The bills being heard include increasing fines from the current maximum of $150, establishing an on-line consumer information system, increasing inspections of these facilities to once a year rather than once every five years, bans on admissions for those facilities posing a danger to residents, timely response to consumer complaints, enhanced staffing and increased training for facility staff, expediting closures of poor facilities and increased protections for relocation of residents, increasing the rights for residents and family members and mandating liability insurance.
Senate Human Services Committee: April 8, 1:30 – Room 3191
SB 894 (Corbett) Expedites suspension and revocation of RCFE licenses
SB 895 (Corbett) Mandates comprehensive annual inspections of RCFEs
SB 911 (Block) Increases administrator and staff training in RCFEs
SB 1153 (Leno) Provides a ban on new admissions for out of compliance RCFEs
SB 1382 (Block) Increases RCFE annual fees by 30%
Assembly Human Services Committee: April 8, 1:30 – Room 437
AB 1523 (Atkins) – Requires RCFEs to carry liability insurance
AB 1554 (Skinner) – Response to consumer complaints on RCFEs
AB 1571 (Eggman) –On-line consumer information system for RCFEs
AB 2236 (Stone & Mainschein) – Increases the fines for violations
According to Pat McGinnis, Executive Director of California Advocates for Nursing Home Reform, “These bills cannot right the wrongs that were committed against so many RCFE residents over the past years, but they do provide a path forward to ensure that protecting the health and safety of RCFE residents is a priority in the future.”
Sponsors and supporters include CANHR, the Consumer Federation of California (which includes a coalition of several organizations), Consumer Advocates for RCFE Reform in San Diego, numerous advocacy organizations for elders and persons with disabilities and many California consumers.
CANHR is a statewide nonprofit 501(c)(3) advocacy organization. CANHR’s mission is to improve the choices, care, and quality of life for California’s long-term care consumers. CANHR released a white paper on RCFE issues in October 2013, “Residential Care in California: Unsafe, Unregulated & Unaccountable,” with recommendations that led to the RCFE Reform Act of 2014. For a copy of the white paper CLICK HERE (PDF).