Patient Safety Act

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Working For You. Protecting The Future of Nursing.

An Act Relating to Patient Safety

Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Kentucky:

SECTION 1. A NEW SECTION OF KRS CHAPTER 216B IS CREATED TO READ AS FOLLOWS:

All health care facilities and services licensed under this chapter, with the exception of personal care homes, family care homes, and boarding homes, shall develop comprehensive quality assurance or improvement standards adequate to identify, evaluate, and remedy problems related to the quality of health care facilities and services. These standards shall be made available upon request to the public during regular business hours and shall include:

  1. An ongoing written internal quality assurance or improvement program;
  2. Specific, written guidelines for quality care studies and monitoring;
  3. Performance and clinical outcomes-based criteria;
  4. Procedures for remedial action to correct quality problems, including written procedures for taking appropriate corrective action;
  5. A plan for data gathering and assessment;
  6. A peer review process; and
  7. A summary of process outcomes and follow-up actions related to the overall quality improvement program for the health care facility or service.

SECTION 2. A NEW SECTION OF KRS CHAPTER 216B IS CREATED TO READ AS FOLLOWS:

Current federal or state regulations which address quality assurance and quality improvement requirements for nursing facilities, intermediate care facilities, and skilled care facilities shall suffice for compliance with the standards in this section.

All health care facilities and services licensed under this chapter shall include in their policies and procedures a care delivery model based on patient needs which includes but is not limited to:

  1. Defined roles and responsibilities of licensed and unlicensed health care personnel;
  2. A staffing plan that specifies staffing levels of licensed and unlicensed personnel required to safely and consistently meet the performance and clinical outcomes-based standards as outlined in the facility’s or service’s quality improvement plan;
  3. A staffing model that is developed and implemented in an interdisciplinary and collaborative manner;
  4. A policy and method that incorporates at least four
  5. components in an ongoing assessment done by the registered nurse of the severity of the patient’s disease, patient condition, level of impairment or disability, and the specific unit patient census to meet the needs of the individual patient in a timely manner; and
  6. A staffing model that supports the delivery of patient care services with an appropriate mix of licensed health care   personnel that will allow them to practice according to their legal scope of practice, and for nurses, the professional standards of practice referenced in KRS Chapter 314, and facility   and service policies.

SECTION 3. A NEW SECTION OF KRS CHAPTER 216B IS CREATED TO READ AS FOLLOWS:

If a nursing facility, intermediate care facility, or skilled care facility meets the most current state or federal regulations which address safe and consistent staffing levels of licensed and unlicensed personnel, those shall suffice for compliance with the standards in this section.

(1)  Any agent or employee of a health care facility or service licensed under this chapter who knows or has reasonable cause to believe that the quality of care of a patient, patient safety, or the health care facility’s or service’s safety is in jeopardy shall make an oral or written report of the problem to the health care facility or service, and may make it to any appropriate private, public, state, or federal agency.

(2)  Any individual in an administrative or supervisory capacity at the health care facility or service who receives a report under subsection (1) of this section shall investigate the problem, take appropriate action, and provide a response to the individual reporting the problem within seven (7) working days.

(3)  No health care facility or service licensed under this chapter shall by policy, contract, procedure, or other formal or informal means subject to reprisal, or directly or indirectly use, or threaten to use, any authority or influence, in any manner whatsoever, which tends to discourage, restrain, suppress, dissuade, deter, prevent, interfere with, coerce, or discriminate against any agent or employee who in good faith reports, discloses, divulges, or otherwise brings to the attention of the health care facility or service the circumstances or facts to form the basis of a report under subsection (1) or (2) of this section.  No health care facility or service shall require any agent or employee to give notice prior to making a report, disclosure, or divulgence under subsections (1) or (2) of this section.

(4)  All reports, investigations, and action taken subject to this chapter shall be conducted in a manner that protects and maintains the confidentiality of patients and personnel and preserves the integrity of data, information, and medical records.

(5)  All health care facilities and services licensed under this chapter shall, as a condition of licensure, abide by the terms of Section 1 of this Act and this section.

(6)  No agent or employee of a  health care facility or service shall file a report under subsection (1) or (2) of this section in bad faith and shall have a reasonable basis for filing a report.

SECTION 4. A NEW SECTION OF KRS CHAPTER 216B IS CREATED TO READ AS FOLLOWS:

(1)  All health care facilities and services licensed under this chapter shall require all persons, including students, who examine, observe, or treat a patient or resident of the health care facility or service to wear identification which readily identifies, at a minimum, the person’s first name, licensure credential, and position title or department.

(2)  The identification shall be of a size and type and appropriately displayed so that it may be easily detected and read.

To file a report under the Patient Safety Act, contact the Office of the Inspector General.

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