38 CFR 51.100 - Quality of life.

§ 51.100 Quality of life.

A facility management must care for its residents in a manner and in an environment that promotes maintenance or enhancement of each resident's quality of life.

(a)Dignity. The facility management must promote care for residents in a manner and in an environment that maintains or enhances each resident's dignity and respect in full recognition of his or her individuality.

(b)Self-determination and participation. The resident has the right to -

(1) Choose activities, schedules, and health care consistent with his or her interests, assessments, and plans of care;

(2) Interact with members of the community both inside and outside the facility; and

(3) Make choices about aspects of his or her life in the facility that are significant to the resident.

(c)Resident Council. The facility management must establish a council of residents that meet at least quarterly. The facility management must document any concerns submitted to the management of the facility by the council.

(d)Participation in resident and family groups.

(1) A resident has the right to organize and participate in resident groups in the facility;

(2) A resident's family has the right to meet in the facility with the families of other residents in the facility;

(3) The facility management must provide the council and any resident or family group that exists with private space;

(4) Staff or visitors may attend meetings at the group's invitation;

(5) The facility management must provide a designated staff person responsible for providing assistance and responding to written requests that result from group meetings;

(6) The facility management must listen to the views of any resident or family group, including the council established under paragraph (c) of this section, and act upon the concerns of residents, families, and the council regarding policy and operational decisions affecting resident care and life in the facility.

(e)Participation in other activities. A resident has the right to participate in social, religious, and community activities that do not interfere with the rights of other residents in the facility. The facility management must arrange for religious counseling by clergy of various faith groups.

(f)Accommodation of needs. A resident has the right to -

(1) Reside and receive services in the facility with reasonable accommodation of individual needs and preferences, except when the health or safety of the individual or other residents would be endangered; and

(2) Receive notice before the resident's room or roommate in the facility is changed.

(g)Patient Activities.

(1) The facility management must provide for an ongoing program of activities designed to meet, in accordance with the comprehensive assessment, the interests and the physical, mental, and psychosocial well-being of each resident.

(2) The activities program must be directed by a qualified professional who is a qualified therapeutic recreation specialist or an activities professional who -

(i) Is licensed or registered, if applicable, by the State in which practicing; and

(ii) Is certified as a therapeutic recreation specialist or as an activities professional by a recognized accrediting body.

(h)Social Services.

(1) The facility management must provide medically related social services to attain or maintain the highest practicable mental and psychosocial well-being of each resident.

(2) For each 120 beds, a nursing home must employ one or more qualified social workers who work for a total period that equals at least the work time of one full-time employee (FTE). A State home that has more or less than 120 beds must provide qualified social worker services on a proportionate basis (for example, a nursing home with 60 beds must employ one or more qualified social workers who work for a total period equaling at least one-half FTE and a nursing home with 180 beds must employ qualified social workers who work for a total period equaling at least one and one-half FTE).

(3) Qualifications of social worker. A qualified social worker is an individual with -

(i) A bachelor's degree in social work from a school accredited by the Council of Social Work Education (Note: A master's degree social worker with experience in long-term care is preferred), and

(ii) A social work license from the State in which the State home is located, if offered by the State, and

(iii) A minimum of one year of supervised social work experience in a health care setting working directly with individuals.

(4) The facility management must have sufficient support staff to meet patients' social services needs.

(5) Facilities for social services must ensure privacy for interviews.

(i)Environment. The facility management must provide -

(1) A safe, clean, comfortable, and homelike environment, allowing the resident to use his or her personal belongings to the extent possible;

(2) Housekeeping and maintenance services necessary to maintain a sanitary, orderly, and comfortable interior;

(3) Clean bed and bath linens that are in good condition;

(4) Private closet space in each resident room, as specified in § 51.200(d)(2)(iv) of this part;

(5) Adequate and comfortable lighting levels in all areas;

(6) Comfortable and safe temperature levels. Facilities must maintain a temperature range of 71-81 degrees Fahrenheit; and

(7) For the maintenance of comfortable sound levels.

(The Office of Management and Budget has approved the information collection requirements in this section under control number 2900-0160)
(Authority: 38 U.S.C. 101, 501, 1710, 1741-1743)
[ 65 FR 968, Jan. 6, 2000, as amended at 74 FR 19434, Apr. 29, 2009]

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