§ 2800.81. Physical accommodations and equipment.
(a) The residence shall provide or arrange for physical site accommodations
and equipment necessary to meet the health and safety needs of a resident with
a disability and to allow safe movement within the residence and exiting from the
(b) Wheelchairs, walkers, prosthetic devices and other apparatus used by residents must be clean, in good repair and free of hazards.
§ 2800.82. Poisons.
(a) Poisonous materials shall be stored in their original, labeled containers.
(b) Poisonous materials shall be stored separately from food, food preparation
surfaces and dining surfaces.
(c) Poisonous materials shall be kept locked and inaccessible to residents
unless all of the residents living in the residence are able to safely use or avoid
§ 2800.83. Temperature.
(a) The indoor temperature, in areas used by the residents, must be at least
70° F when residents are present in the residence.
(b) A residence in existence prior to January 18, 2011, shall provide central
air conditioning. If central air conditioning is not feasible or is cost prohibitive,
window air conditioning units shall be provided. The residence shall submit justification to the Department for the use of window air conditioning units.
(c) For new construction after January 18, 2011, the residence shall provide
central air conditioning.
§ 2800.84. Heat sources.
Heat sources, such as steam and hot heating pipes, water pipes, fixed space
heaters, hot water heaters and radiators exceeding 120° F that are accessible to
the resident must be equipped with protective guards or insulation to prevent the
resident from coming in contact with the heat source.
§ 2800.85. Sanitation.
(a) Sanitary conditions shall be maintained.
(b) There may be no evidence of infestation of insects or rodents in the residence.
(c) Trash shall be removed from the premises at least once a week.
(d) Trash in kitchens and bathrooms shall be kept in covered trash receptacles
that prevent the penetration of insects and rodents.
(e) Trash outside the residence shall be kept in covered receptacles that prevent the penetration of insects and rodents.
(f) For a residence serving 9 or more residents that is not connected to a
public sewer system, there shall be a written sanitation approval for its sewage
system by the sewage enforcement official of the municipality in which the residence is located.
§ 2800.86. Ventilation.
(a) All areas of the residence that are used by the resident shall be ventilated.
Ventilation includes an operable window, air conditioner, fan or mechanical ventilation that ensures airflow.
(b) A bathroom that does not have an operable, outside window must be
equipped with an exhaust fan for ventilation.
§ 2800.87. Lighting.
The residence’s rooms, hallways, interior stairs, outside steps, outside doorways, porches, ramps, evacuation routes, outside walkways and fire escapes must
be lighted and marked to ensure that residents, including those with vision
impairments, can safely move through the residence and safely evacuate.
§ 2800.88. Surfaces.
(a) Floors, walls, ceilings, windows, doors and other surfaces must be clean,
in good repair and free of hazards.
(b) The residence may not use asbestos products for renovations or new construction.
(c) If asbestos is found in a residence or contained in any part of the residence, the residence shall have a certification
rom an asbestos remediation company that the residence is safe for residents and that the asbestos does not pose a risk.
§ 2800.89. Water.
(a) The residence must have hot and cold water under pressure in each bathroom, kitchen and laundry area to accommodate the
needs of the residents in the residence.
(b) Hot water temperature in areas accessible to the resident may not exceed 120° F.
(c) A residence that is not connected to a public water system shall have a
coliform water test at least every 3 months, by a Department of Environmental
Protection-certified laboratory, stating that the water is below maximum contaminant levels. A public water system is a system that provides water to the public
for human consumption, which has at least 15 service connections or regularly
serves an average of at least 25 individuals daily at least 60 days out of the year.
(d) If the water is found to be above maximum contaminant levels, the residence shall conduct remediation activity to reduce the level of contaminants to
below the maximum contaminant level. During remediation activity, an alternate
source of drinking water shall be provided to the residents.
(e) The residence shall keep documentation of the laboratory certification, in
addition to the results and corrections made to ensure safe water for drinking.
§ 2800.90. Communication system.
(a) The residence shall have a working, noncoin operated, landline telephone
that is accessible in emergencies and accessible to individuals with disabilities.
(b) For a residence serving nine or more residents, there shall be a system or
method of communication such as an intercom, public address, pager or cell
phone system that enables staff persons to immediately contact other staff persons
in the residence for assistance in an emergency.
§ 2800.91. Emergency telephone numbers.
Telephone numbers for the nearest hospital, police department, fire department,
ambulance, poison control, local emergency management and assisted living residence complaint hotline
shall be posted on or by each telephone with an outside line.
§ 2800.92. Windows and screens.
Windows, including windows in doors, must be in good repair and securely
screened when doors or windows are open.
§ 2800.93. Handrails and railings.
(a) Each ramp, interior stairway, hallway and outside steps must have a wellsecured handrail.
(b) Each porch must have a well-secured railing.
§ 2800.94. Landings and stairs.
(a) Interior and exterior doors that open directly into a stairway and are used
for exit doors, resident areas and fire exits must have a landing, which is a minimum of 3 feet by 3 feet.
(b) Interior stairs, exterior steps and ramps must have nonskid surfaces.
(c) Stairs must have strips for those with vision impairments.
§ 2800.95. Furniture and equipment.
Furniture and equipment must be in good repair, clean and free of hazards.
§ 2800.96. First aid kit.
(a) The residence shall have a first aid kit in each building on the premises
that includes nonporous disposable gloves, antiseptic, adhesive bandages, gauze
pads, thermometer, adhesive tape, scissors, breathing shield, eye coverings and
tweezers. The residence shall have an automatic external defibrillation device
located in each building on the premises.
(b) Staff persons shall know the location of the first aid kit.
(c) The first aid kit must be in a location that is easily accessible to staff persons.
This section cited in 55 Pa. Code § 2800.171 (relating to transportation).
§ 2800.97. Elevators and stair glides.
Each elevator and stair glide must have a certificate of operation from the
Department of Labor and Industry or the appropriate local building authority in
accordance with 34 Pa. Code Chapter 405 (relating to elevators and other lifting
§ 2800.98. Indoor activity space.
(a) The residence shall have at least two indoor wheelchair accessible common rooms for all residents for activities such as reading, recreation and group
activities. One of the common rooms shall be available for resident use at any
time, provided the use does not affect or disturb others.
(b) The residence shall have at least one furnished living room or lounge area
for residents, their families and visitors. The combined living room or lounge
areas must accommodate all residents at one time. There must be at least 15
square feet per living unit for up to 50 living units. There must be a total of 750
square feet if there are more than 50 living units. These rooms or areas must contain tables, chairs and lighting to accommodate the residents, their families and
(c) The residence shall have a working television and radio available to residents in a living room or lounge area.
This section cited in 55 Pa. Code § 2800.221 (relating to activities program).
§ 2800.99. Recreation space.
The residence shall provide regular access to outdoor and indoor recreation
space and recreational items, such as books, newspapers, magazines, puzzles,
games, cards and crafts.
This section cited in 55 Pa. Code § 2800.221 (relating to activities program).
§ 2800.100. Exterior conditions.
(a) The exterior of the building and the building grounds or yard must be in
good repair and free of hazards.
(b) The residence shall ensure that ice, snow and obstructions are removed
from outside walkways, ramps, steps, recreational areas and exterior fire escapes.
§ 2800.101. Resident living units.
(a) A residence shall provide a resident with the resident’s own living unit
unless the conditions of subsection (c) are met.
(b) The following conditions apply to a residence:
(1) For new construction of residences after January 18, 2011, each living
unit for a single resident must have at least 225 square feet of floor space measured wall-to-wall, excluding bathrooms and closet space. If two residents
share a living unit, there must be a total of 300 square feet in the living unit.
Exceptions to the size of the living unit may be made at the Department’s discretion.
(2) For facilities in existence prior to January 18, 2011, each living unit
must have at least 160 square feet measured wall to wall, excluding bathrooms
and closet space. If two residents share a living unit, there must be a total of
210 square feet in the living unit. Exceptions to the size of the living unit may
be made at the Department’s discretion.
(3) Each living unit must have a telephone jack and individually controlled
thermostats for heating and cooling.
(4) The doors in living units, including entrance doors, must be accessible
or adaptable for wheelchair use.
(c) Two residents may voluntarily agree to share one living unit provided that
the agreement is in writing and contained in each of the resident-residence contract of those residents. A licensee may not require residents to share a living unit.
The maximum number of residents in any living unit shall be two residents.
(d) Kitchen capacity requirements are as follows:
(1) New construction. For new construction of residences after January 18,
2011, the kitchen capacity, at a minimum, must contain a cabinet for food storage, a small bar-type sink with hot and cold running water and space with
electrical outlets suitable for small appliances such as a microwave oven and a
(i) Upon entering the assisted living residence, the resident or his designated person shall be asked if the resident wishes to have a cooking appliance or small refrigerator, or both. The cooking appliance or small refrigerator, or both, shall be provided by the residence if desired by the resident or
his designated person. If the resident or the designated person wishes to provide his own cooking appliance or small refrigerator, or both, it shall meet
the residence’s safety standards.
(ii) An appliance shall be designed so it can be disconnected and
removed for resident safety or if the resident chooses not to have the appliance within his living unit.
(2) Existing facilities. Facilities that convert to residences after January 18,
2011, must meet the following requirements related to kitchen capacity:
(i) The residence shall provide space with electrical outlets suitable for
small appliances, such as a microwave oven and small refrigerator.
(A) Upon entering the assisted living residence, the resident or his
designated person shall be asked if the resident wishes to have a cooking
appliance or small refrigerator, or both. The cooking appliance or small
refrigerator, or both, shall be provided by the residence if desired by the
resident or his designated person. If the resident or his designated person
wishes to provide his own cooking appliance or small refrigerator, or both,
it must meet the residence’s safety standards.
(B) An appliance shall be designed so it can be disconnected and
removed for resident safety or if the resident chooses not to have the
appliance within his living unit.
(ii) The residence shall provide access to a sink for dishes, a stovetop
for hot food preparation and a food preparation area in a common area. A
common resident kitchen may not include the kitchen used by the residence
staff for the preparation of resident or employee meals, or the storage of
(e) Ceiling height in each living unit must be an average of at least 7 feet.
(f) Each living unit must have at least one window with direct exposure to
(g) A resident’s bedroom in the living unit shall be used only by the occupying resident unless two consenting adult residents agree to share a bedroom and
the requirements of subsection (c) are met.
(h) Each living unit must have a door with a lock, except where a lock in a
unit under a special care designation would pose a risk or be unsafe. The administrator shall maintain a master key that can open all locks in the event of an
(i) A resident shall have access to his living unit at all times.
(j) Each resident shall have the following in the living unit:
(1) A bed with a solid foundation and fire retardant mattress that is in good
repair, clean and supports the resident. An exception will be permitted for residents who wish to provide their own mattresses.
(2) A chair for each resident that meets the resident’s needs.
(3) Pillows, bed linens and blankets that are clean and in good repair.
(4) A storage area for clothing that includes a chest of drawers and a closet
or wardrobe space with clothing racks or shelves accessible to the resident.
(5) A bedside table or a shelf.
(6) A mirror.
(7) An operable lamp or other source of lighting that can be turned on at
(8) If a resident shares a bedroom with another resident, the items specified in paragraphs (4)—(7) may be shared with one other resident.
(k) Cots and portable beds are prohibited.
(l) Bunk beds or other raised beds that require residents to climb steps or
ladders to get into or out of bed are prohibited.
(m) A living unit may not be used as an exit from or used as a passageway to
another part of the residence unless in an emergency situation.
(n) The living unit must have walls, floors and ceilings, which are finished,
clean and in good repair.
(o) In living units with a separate bedroom, there must be a door on the bedroom.
(p) Space for storage of personal property shall be provided in a dry, protected area.
(q) There must be drapes, shades, curtains, blinds or shutters on the living
unit windows. Window coverings must be clean, in good repair, provide privacy
and cover the entire window when drawn.
(r) Each living unit must be equipped with an emergency notification system
to notify staff in the event of an emergency.
This section cited in 55 Pa. Code § 2800.121 (relating to unobstructed egress); and 55 Pa. Code
§ 2800.232 (relating to environmental protection).
§ 2800.102. Bathrooms.
(a) There must be one functioning flush toilet in the bathroom in the living
(b) There must be at least one sink and wall mirror in the bathroom of the
(c) There must be at least one bathtub or shower in the bathroom of the living unit.
(d) Toilet and bath areas in the living unit must have grab bars, hand rails or
assist bars. Bathtubs and showers must have slip-resistant surfaces.
(e) Privacy in the living unit must be provided for toilets, showers and bathtubs by partitions or doors. Bathroom doors in a double occupancy living unit
must be lockable by the resident, unless contraindicated by the support plan.
(f) An individual towel, washcloth and soap shall be provided for each resident unless the resident provides his own supplies of these items.
(g) Individual toiletry items including toothpaste, toothbrush, shampoo,
deodorant, comb and hairbrush shall be made available to residents who are not
recipients of SSI. If the residence charges for these items, the charges shall be
indicated in the resident-residence contract. Availability of toiletry items for residents who are recipients of SSI is specified in § 2800.27(d)(1) (relating to SSI
(h) Toilet paper shall be provided for every toilet.
(i) Bar soap or a dispenser with soap shall be provided within reach of each
bathroom sink. Bar soap, however, is not permitted when a living unit is shared
unless there is a separate bar clearly labeled for each resident sharing the living
(j) Towels and washcloths shall be in the possession of the resident in the
resident’s living unit unless the resident has access to the residence’s linen supply.
(k) Use of a common towel is prohibited.
(l) Shelves or hooks for the resident’s towel and clothing shall be provided.
(m) A residence shall have at least one public restroom that is convenient to
common areas and wheelchair accessible.
(n) Each bathroom must be equipped with an emergency notification system
to notify staff in the event of an emergency.
§ 2800.103. Food service.
(a) A residence shall have access on the grounds to an operable kitchen with
a refrigerator, sink, stove, oven, cooking equipment and cabinets or shelves for
storage. If the kitchen is not in the residence, the residence shall have a kitchen
area with a refrigerator, cooking equipment, a sink and food storage space.
(b) Kitchen surfaces must be of a nonporous material and cleaned and sanitized after each meal.
(c) Food shall be protected from contamination while being stored, prepared,
transported and served.
(d) Food shall be stored off the floor.
(e) Food served and returned from an individual’s plate may not be served
again or used in the preparation of other dishes. Leftover food shall be labeled
(f) Food requiring refrigeration shall be stored at or below 40° F. Frozen food
shall be kept at or below 0° F. Thermometers are required in refrigerators and
(g) Food shall be stored in closed or sealed containers.
(h) Food shall be thawed either in the refrigerator, microwave oven, under
cool water or as part of the cooking process.
(i) Outdated or spoiled food or dented cans may not be used.
(j) Eating, drinking and cooking utensils shall be washed, rinsed and sanitized after each use by a method specified in 7 Pa. Code Chapter 46, Subchapter
D (relating to equipment, utensils and linens).
§ 2800.104. Dining room.
(a) An assisted living residence shall have an accessible common dining
space outside the resident living units. A dining room area must be equipped with
tables and chairs and able to accommodate the maximum number of residents
scheduled for meals at any one time. There must be at least 15 square feet per
person for residents scheduled for meals at any one time.
(b) Dishes, glassware and utensils shall be provided for eating, drinking, preparing and serving food. These utensils must be clean, and free of chips and
cracks. Plastic and paper plates, utensils and cups for meals may not be used on
a regular basis.
(c) Condiments shall be available at the dining table.
(d) Adaptive eating equipment or utensils shall be available, if needed, to
assist residents in eating at the table.
(e) Breakfast, midday and evening meals shall be served to residents in a
dining room except in the following situations:
(1) Service in the resident’s living unit shall be available at no additional
charge when the resident is unable to come to the dining room due to illness.
(2) When room service is available in a residence, a resident may choose
to have a meal served in the resident’s living unit. This service shall be provided at the resident’s request and may not replace daily meals in a dining
§ 2800.105. Laundry.
(a) Laundry service for bed linens, towels and personal clothing shall be provided by the residence, at no additional charge, to residents who are recipients of
or eligible applicants for SSI benefits. Laundry service does not include dry
(b) Laundry service for bed linens, towels and personal clothing for the residents who are not recipients of SSI shall be provided by the residence unless otherwise indicated in the resident-residence contract. If a residence provides laundry facilities, there may not be a prohibition against residents doing their own
(c) The supply of bed linens and towels must be sufficient to ensure a complete change of bed linen and towels at least once per week.
(d) Bed linens and towels shall be changed at least once every week and more
often as needed to maintain sanitary conditions.
(e) Clean linens and towels shall be stored in an area separate from soiled
linen and clothing.
(f) Measures shall be implemented to ensure that residents’ clothing are not
lost or misplaced during laundering or cleaning. The resident’s clean clothing
shall be returned to the resident within 24 hours after laundering.
(g) To reduce the risks of fire hazards, lint shall be removed from the lint trap
and drum of clothes dryers after each use. Lint shall be cleaned from the vent
duct and internal and external ductwork of clothes dryers according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
This section cited in 55 Pa. Code § 2800.220 (relating to service provision).
§ 2800.106. Swimming areas.
If a residence operates a swimming area, the following requirements apply:
(1) Swimming areas shall be operated in accordance with applicable laws
(2) Written policy and procedures to protect the health, safety and wellbeing of the residents shall be developed and implemented.
§ 2800.107. Emergency preparedness.
(a) The administrator shall have a copy and be familiar with the emergency
preparedness plan for the municipality in which the residence is located.
(b) The residence shall have written emergency procedures that include the
(1) Contact information for each resident’s designated person.
(2) The residence’s plan to provide the emergency medical information for
each resident that ensures confidentiality.
(3) Contact telephone numbers of local and state emergency management
agencies and local resources for housing and emergency care of residents.
(4) Means of transportation in the event that relocation is required.
(5) Duties and responsibilities of staff persons during the evacuation, transportation, and at the emergency location. These duties and responsibilities shall be
specific to each resident’s emergency needs.
(6) Alternate means of meeting resident needs in the event of a utility outage.
(c) The residence shall maintain at least a 3-day supply of nonperishable food
and drinking water for residents.
(d) The written emergency procedures shall be reviewed, updated, and submitted annually to the local emergency management agency.
This section cited in 55 Pa. Code § 2800.16 (relating to reportable incidents and conditions); and
55 Pa. Code § 2800.123 (relating to emergency evacuation).
§ 2800.108. Firearms and weapons.
(a) A residence shall have a written policy regarding firearms, weapons, and
ammunition where these items are on the premises or in possession of any resident or staff member. A residence is not required to permit firearms, weapons and
(b) The policy must include, at a minimum, procedures regarding the safety,
access and use of firearms, weapons, and ammunition.
(c) Firearms, weapons, and ammunition shall be permitted on the licensed
premises of a residence only when the following conditions are met:
(1) Firearms and weapons shall be contained in a locked cabinet located in
a place other than the residents’ living unit or in a common living area.
(2) Ammunition shall be contained in a locked area separate from firearms
and weapons, and located in a place other than the residents’ living unit or in
a common living area.
(3) The key to the locked cabinet containing the firearms, weapons and
ammunition shall be in the possession of the administrator or a designee.
(4) The administrator or designee shall be the only individual permitted to
open the locked cabinet containing the firearms and weapons and the locked
the area containing the ammunition.
(d) If a firearm, weapon, or ammunition is the property of a resident, there
shall be a written policy and procedures regarding the safety, access, and use of
firearms, weapons, and ammunition. A resident may not take a firearm, weapon
, or ammunition out of the locked cabinet into the common living area.
§ 2800.109. Pets.
(a) The residence rules must specify whether the residence permits pets on
(b) Cats and dogs present at the residence shall have a current rabies vaccination. A current certificate of rabies vaccination from a licensed veterinarian
shall be kept.
(c) Pets that are accessible to the residents shall be in good health and nonaggressive to the residents.
(d) If a residence has additional charges for pets, the charges shall be
included in the resident-residence contract.
(e) A residence shall disclose to applicants whether pets are permitted and
present in the residence.