Bill Summary for S 274 (2023-2024)

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Summary date: 

Oct 25 2023

Bill Information:

View NCGA Bill Details2023-2024 Session
Senate Bill 274 (Public) Filed Thursday, March 9, 2023
Intro. by Perry, Sawyer, Overcash.

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Bill summary

Conference report replaces the 4th edition in its entirety with the following.

Expands the scope of the Home Care Agency Licensure Act (GS Chapter 131E, Article 6, Part 3) so it now also includes licensure of home assistance providers (defined as a private or public organization  that is predominantly engaged in providing, directly or indirectly, home assistance services; This excludes a home care agency, home health agency, or other organization predominantly engaged in providing home care services).  Defines home assistance services, as the following non-home-care services: (1) in-home companion, sitter, or respite care services provided to an individual or (2) homemaker services provided in combination with in-home companion, sitter, or respite care services. Defines homemaker services as basic home management tasks, shopping, meal preparation, transportation, socialization, medication reminders, and other services that do not require the service provider to touch the client and which do not require training or verification of skills by a registered nurse. Makes clarifying changes to home care services to distinguish that term from home assistance services.  Requires home assistance service providers to obtain a license under the procedure set forth in GS 131E-138 from the Department of Health and Human Services before operating as a home assistance service provider.

Requires a license to operate as a home assistance services provider. Sets forth six requirements for home assistance service providers to operate lawfully under the statute: (1) maintain liability insurance; (2) inform all new clients that they do not provide health care or hands-on care; (3) conduct a criminal background check in any state where any contractor or employee was a resident during the past seven years; (4) document that each employee or contractor possesses a valid drivers license, vehicle registration, proof of insurance, and has provided an official driving  record from the North Carolina Division of Motor Vehicles; (5) require that all services provided by employees or contracts are provided in a safe and appropriate manner that complies with all relevant laws; (6) annually attest that the home assistance service provider is in compliance with the above requirements. Prevents home assistance service providers from submitting claims for reimbursement to any public or private insurer, managed care organization, or health plan, employing or contracting with an individual convicted of a relevant offense under GS 131D-40(d), or employing or contracting with an individual on the National Sex Offender Public Website.

Makes conforming changes to various provisions of the licensure act, including GS 131E-140 (authorizing the NC Medical Care Commission to adopt rules); GS 131E-141.1 (penalties for operating without a license); GS 131E-142 (actions for injunctive relief); GS 131E-143 (prohibiting smoking while providing services to an individual in their home); GS 131E-135 (title of the act); and GS 131E-136 (definitions under the statute) to account for expanded scope of the statute.

Amends GS 131E-272 to set a fee of $510 for an initial home assistance service license and changes the amount of an initial home care license from $560 to $510.

Makes conforming changes to act’s long and short titles.