Ensuring that the Residents in your Assisted Living Facility get the proper medical care is not only a good protocol to keep them healthy, it is also an observance of Rule 58A-5.0182(3) of the FAC which mandates that you must assist residents in making appointments, remind them about their scheduled appointments for medical, dental, nursing, or mental health services and provide transportation where necessary.
Facilities find it helpful to create relationships with health care providers who are willing to come to the facility to provide medical services. Being able to offer this to residents can be a great alternative to transporting them outside the facility
Some of the positive outlooks to having a resident doctor who comes to the ALF include:
Not having to go to a Doctor’s office outside the facility.
Getting quicker response times in times of emergencies.
This option is a more convenient way also, for the facility to have a better and faster communication line with the residents’ health care provider.
Facilities that are unable to prove that the resident was aware or agreed to the new health care professional providing care to them have been flagged by AHCA.
A lot of times, facilities will ask the resident or their family members if they agree to use the facility’s health care and they will agree. The baffling thing then happens when the AHCA surveyor asks them if they were given the option of choosing the health care provider of their choice, and the residents may most times go-ahead to say “they were just assigned one”
Or a resident who has not seen a medical professional in forever will be seen by the Facility Doctor in emergency situations and when asked by the AHCA if they selected the Doctor, they say ”No”.
These examples are the reasons why it is important for a facility to have consent forms stating that the resident was given the option of either choosing their own health care professional or electing for the one suggested by the facility.
Consent must be obtained from the senior resident or their representative voluntarily without pressure.
It is also very important that the person signing the medical consent form has adequate capacity to give consent. Where a senior resident has either dementia, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, or other mental related diseases, by virtue of the Health Act 1983, they are said to lack adequate capacity to give consent because they are unaware of what they are doing. If a resident lacks capacity, their representatives i.e. someone known to the resident or family who has been given consent to care for the senior resident can sign the form on behalf of the resident.
The consent form is to protect the Assisted Living Facility from being flagged by ACHA and to show that the residents had options regarding the choice of health care provider they would like to see. Where they eventually choose the Facility’s Doctor, it must be documented in their file and their signature to show that they agreed to the health care provider.
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