Learn About Minnesota’s Assisted Living Regulations
By David Besnette for Assisted Living Directory
One of the most common areas of confusion when it comes to assisted living is in regards to how assisted living is regulated. Most people are not aware that each state, for the most part, is in charge of how they set rules, statutes, and regulations relevant to assisted living.
This includes assisted living definitions – each state defines assisted living differently. Sometimes quite differently, to the point where certain states don’t even officially recognize the term ‘assisted living’ and instead use terms such as ‘Adult Foster Care.’
Yes, it is confusing.
One of the ways seniors, families and caregivers can take some of the mystery out of it is by knowing how to find a state’s regulations (for reference) and to become familiar with who the responsible agency is for overseeing and regulating assisted living.
For Minnesota, let’s start with the latter – identifying who is responsible for the oversight of assisted living in the State of Minnesota.
This title goes to the Minnesota Department of Health – their site looks like this:
A visit to their site provides access to important documents, licensing information, an overview of the services requiring registration, which includes assisted living, and much more.
The important section for information and forms required for registration of housing with Services Establishment (HWS), which, as mentioned, includes assisted living in Minnesota, is here:
This section also provides a helpful contact section at the bottom, if you have questions about the Licensing and Certification of your assisted living home.
I’d also like to point out a very helpful tool that the Department of Health provides – the Choosing a Facility section, which offers a ‘find a facility or provider’ tool and database.
For example, if you choose “Housing with Services” you can search by county, city or by provider.
The list produced includes all of the licensed assisted living, or senior living communities, and very importantly, the results include direct contact information, as well as the administrator’s name.
Where can I locate, and view Minnesota’s assisted living regulations?
You’ll need to visit the Office of the Revisor of Statutes, which has a ‘Chapter 144G Assisted Living Services section, and associated Statutes.
ASSISTED LIVING; PROTECTED TITLE; REGULATORY FUNCTION.
ASSISTED LIVING REQUIREMENTS.
RESERVATION OF RIGHTS.
REIMBURSEMENT UNDER ASSISTED LIVING SERVICE PACKAGES.
UNIFORM CONSUMER INFORMATION GUIDE.
The definitions section is always useful to go over. The 144G.01 includes a definition for assisted living in the State of Minnesota, which reads:
Why is important to be familiar with Minnesota’s assisted living regulations?
For seniors living in assisted living or residential care in Minnesota, knowing about your state’s regulations, or at least where to find them if there is a question or concern, allows you to know the standards of care that you should expect, and to be able to ‘call out’ a facility, employee, or administrator if your care is substandard, or if your health or safety are at risk.
For families, you’ll be able to monitor, much in the same regard as the resident, how well they are being cared for, and if the home or facility is providing care in accordance with state statutes.
For administrators, staff and employees of assisted living homes in Minnesota, you’ll be able to fulfill your duties in the facility, and avoid any inspections issues, citations or violations. More importantly, you’ll be taking an active part in ensuring the health, safety, happiness and dignity of those you are caring for.
Lastly, I recommend that anyone considering opening their own assisted living home or residence in Minnesota to become familiar with these rules and regulations, so you may understand ‘what you are getting into’ and if you have what it takes to stay up-to-date with this ever-changing environment of rules, quality guidelines, and the ever-imminent inspections and complaints investigations that you are sure to experience.
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