§ 17.82Contracts for outpatient services for veterans with alcohol or drug dependence or abuse disabilities.
(a) Contracts for treatment services authorized under § 17.80 may be awarded in accordance with applicable Department of Veterans Affairs and Federal procurement procedures. Such contracts will be awarded only after the quality and effectiveness, including adequate protection for the safety of the participants of the contractor's program, has been determined and then only to contractors determined by the Under Secretary for Health or designee to be fully capable of meeting the following standards:
(1) The following minimum fire safety requirements must be met:
(i) The building must meet the requirements in the applicable provisions of the NFPA 101 (incorporated by reference, see§ 17.1) and the other publications referenced in those provisions. Any equivalencies or variances to VA requirements must be approved by the appropriate Veterans Health Administration Veterans Integrated Service Network (VISN) Director.
(ii) Where applicable, the facility must have a current occupancy permit issued by the local and state governments in the jurisdiction where the home is located.
(iii) All Department of Veterans Affairs sponsored patients will be mentally and physically capable of leaving the building, unaided, in the event of an emergency.
(iv) As a minimum, fire exit drills must be held at least quarterly, and a written plan for evacuation in the event of fire shall be developed and reviewed annually. The plan shall outline the duties, responsibilities and actions to be taken by the staff in the event of a fire emergency. This plan shall be implemented during fire exit drills.
(v) An annual fire and safety inspection shall be conducted at the facility by qualified Department of Veterans Affairs personnel. If a review of past Department of Veterans Affairs inspections or inspections made by the local authorities indicates that a fire and safety inspection would not be necessary, then the visit to the facility may be waived.
(2) Conform to existing standards of State safety codes and local and/or State health and sanitation codes.
(3) Be licensed under State or local authority.
(4) Where applicable, be accredited by the State.
(5) Comply with the requirements of the “Confidentiality of Alcohol and Drug Abuse Patient Records” (42 CFR part 2) and the “Confidentiality of Certain Medical Records” (38 U.S.C. 7332), which shall be part of the contract.
(6) Demonstrate an existing capability to furnish the following:
(i) A supervised, alcohol and drug free environment, including active affiliation with Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) programs.
(ii) Staff sufficient in numbers and position qualifications to carry out the policies, responsibilities, and programs of the facility.
(iii) Structured activities.
(iv) Appropriate group activities.
(v) Monitoring medications.
(vi) Supportive social service.
(vii) Individual counseling as appropriate.
(viii) Opportunities for learning/development of skills and habits which will enable Department of Veterans Affairs sponsored residents to adjust to and maintain freedom from dependence on or involvement with alcohol or drug abuse or dependence during or subsequent to leaving the facility.
(ix) Support for the individual desire for sobriety (alcohol/drug abuse-free life style).
(x) Opportunities for learning, testing, and internalizing knowledge of illness/recovery process, and to upgrade skills and improve personal relationships.
(7) Data normally maintained and included in a medical record as a function of compliance with State or community licensing standards will be accessible.
(b) Representatives of the Department of Veterans Affairs will inspect the facility prior to award of a contract to assure that prescribed requirements can be met. Inspections may also be carried out at such other times as deemed necessary by the Department of Veterans Affairs.
(c) All requirements in this rule and Department of Veterans Affairs reports of inspection of residential facilities furnishing treatment and rehabilitation services to eligible veterans shall, to the extent possible, be made available to all government agencies charged with the responsibility of licensing or otherwise regulating or inspecting such institutions.
(d) An individual case record will be created for each client which shall be maintained in security and confidence as required by the “Confidentiality of Alcohol and Drug Abuse Patient Records” (42 CFR part 2) and the “Confidentiality of Certain Medical Records” (38 U.S.C. 7332), and will be made available on a need to know basis to appropriate Department of Veterans Affairs staff members involved with the treatment program of the veterans concerned.