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New PCH Application and Processing Fees in Georgia

In Georgia, effective August 3, 2010, the Rules and Regulations for General Licensing and

Enforcement Requirements, Chapter 111-8-25 require all licensed or registered

programs regulated through the Division of Healthcare Facility Regulation (HFR),

Department of Community Health to pay licensure activity fees annually beginning with

2010. Fees for currently licensed or registered programs with licenses or registrations

that do not expire annually must be paid by October 31, 2010.

Personal Care Homes** Annually

< 25 beds $350 Annually

25 < 50 beds $750 Annually

> 50 beds $1,500 Annually

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTION

Q: MAY I PAY THE APPLICATION FEE AT THE TIME I FILE THE APPLICATION TO

BECOME LICENSED AND PAY THE INITIAL LICENSURE FEE WHEN YOU GET

READY TO ISSUE MY LICENSE?

A: No, the rules require you to submit the application fee and the initial licensure fee at

the same time.

Q: IF I OPERATE A LICENSED FACILITY AND I AM INSPECTED BECAUSE OF A

COMPLAINT THAT IS FILED, DO I HAVE TO PAY $250 FOR THE INSPECTION?

A: No. We do not charge for routine complaint inspection visits. You would be charged

$250 if we had to do a follow-up visit on a periodic or full inspection visit and more

serious rule violations were found. The purpose of that follow-up would be to check to

make sure that you corrected the more serious violation that was identified during the

periodic survey.

Q: WHAT IF I CAN’T PAY THE LICENSURE FEES THAT ARE DUE BY OCTOBER

31ST?

A: If you do not pay the fees within 60 days of the due date, October 31, 2010, a late

fee of $150 is added to the amount you owe. If you have not paid the full amount that is

due by January 31, 2011, the Department may take an action to revoke your license for

non-payment of licensure fees. You would have the right to appeal the revocation

through an administrative hearing.

Q: I WANT TO OPEN A SMALL PERSONAL CARE HOME. HOW MUCH WILL THE

LICENSING FEES BE THE FIRST YEAR?

A: Assuming that you will be caring for no more than 24 residents, you will have to pay

an application fee of $300 and an initial licensure fee of $350, for a total of $650 the first

year.

Policies for Personal Care Homes are Here!

Hello everyone, the time has finally come!  Personal Care Home Policies are here and available to you.  If you’ve ever gone to a consultant for help with this, you know that they can charge into the thousands to write policies for you.  Well, now you can buy them one at a time, if  money is tight right now, which I bet it is (isn’t it for everyone?) I made the process simple and painless;  just pay a nominal charge, download and the policies are ready to be used as soon as you print them! How great is that?  Currently I am offering 14 different policies that you can select based on your needs.  You may need just one policy or all 14 its up to you!  Each policy is individually sold and priced to make it easier and more cost effective for you.  After years of requests from my wonderful loyal bloggers I wanted to make life a little easier for you as you embark on this path to operate a Personal Care Home.  It takes a loving caring person to get into this business to provide this service and I applaud each of you.

Take Care!

PERSONAL CARE HOME Policies for Sale coming soon!!!

I’ve gotten tons of feedback from folks all over the country and I appreciate each of you.  Because of the great out pouring and desire of so many to provide care for senior citizens, patients with alzeheimers /dementia, people with physical, mental health or mental retardation, and other vulnerable populations, I am creating a way for you to purchase policies that you can place in your facility.

For many, the task of creating the required policies is the single most challenging part of this business (remember that it is a business!). Many of us have the passion and desire to care for others but lack the time, energy or know-how to create policies and procedures for this service. Consultants charge hundreds, even thousands of dollars to create policies for you. I am creating way to offer policies to you in the most cost effective way.

Please give me your feedback as to what your needs are.  It is my hope to be able to provide this service to you as a way of thanks.  Of course, If you are able to write and create your own policies then I say, go for it!!!!  But for those who feel overwhelmed with establishing and writing you own policies, such as :Emergency Preparedness Plans, Death of a Resident, Managing Funds, Confidentiality, Serious and Unusual incidents, Complaints and Grievances, Medication Management policies, etc, etc. then this opportunity is for you.

Let me know the kinds of policy manuals or individual policies you are seeking.  Look out for an announcement from me soon!!!

More on Personal Care Homes

There have been so many comments about how to get started with a Personal Care Home.  Because we may all be in different States , it’s impossible for me to know every City/State rules and regulations concerning Personal Care Homes (PCH)  I would recommend that you read the first post I wrote on Personal Care homes and then all of the comments and responses following the post.  Then contact your State agency.  Try the Department of Human Resources, the Department of Human Services, Office of Regulatory Services, etc.  If you can’t locate the information from these sources, then visit a few PCH’s in your area and ask the owner, where to go to get started.  Some will actually help you!!  Remember that although your heart is in the right place when thinking of caring for others, it is still a business and other Personal Care Home providers may not be so willing to share information with you, they may feel threatened or territorial.  Still, others are very open and kind.  I believe that visiting several PCH’s is the best way to decide if this business is for you, to observe first hand how it’s done ( or not done) and to ask questions for immediate feedback.  For some of you, it might be feasible to start one in your own home to save on overhead costs.  If my home was up to standards, I would have started in my own home, having my family in the lower part of the house and the PCH residents in the upper half of the house.  Be creative, get ideas from other PCH’s to see how creative you can be.  Check out PCH in various neighborhoods, communities, and socio economic groups to get good ideas. You do not need to be in the medical field or have a medical background in most States. Some require a workshop or orientation to attend before getting licensed.  While others require you to complete a certificate program before getting started.  In Georgia, you have to go to a New Provider Orientation ( one day workshop) and once you get your certificate of completion, you mail it in with your PCH application.  Again, check with your local and State government for your specific requirements!!!!  Feel free to email me at pchpolicies@gmail.com

Starting a Personal Care Home

Personal Care Homes, also called Assisted Living Facilities, are residential homes or apartments for senior citizens or individuals with intellectual disabilities, cognitive disabilites or “mental retardation”. These Personal Care Homes are designed to provide shelter, 3 nutritious meals a day, laundry services, hygiene assistance, ADL’s, and transportation. Some offer activities like arts and crafts, exercise, church services, outdoor trips, movie night, etc.

Personal Care Homes are often recommended to Senior Citizens by their children, physicians, family members, social workers, hospital discharge planners, or themselves. Most seniors who are having difficulty staying home alone are ideal candidates for this program. Some find that they are falling more and becoming a danger to themselves. Others might find that they are forgetful, confused or disoriented at times. Still others desire the social interaction with their peers in a safe, clean, and loving environment.

Nowadays, adult children are unable to care for their aging parents due to their own busy schedules, lack of financial resources, or due to the long distance that separates them from their parents. Personal Care Homes offer a great alternative to living without their own family. In some states like Georgia, a Personal Care Home can have as few as 6 residents in the home which offer much more one on one interaction and care. Most of the residents have their own room in which they can bring personal touches from home such as pictures for the wall, curtains, bed linens, toiletries, and some small furniture.

Residential services to those with “mental retardation” or more appropriately, “developmental disabilities or intellectual disabilities” are a great option for those adults, ages 19 and over, who desire to live alone or whose family is ready for them to make a transition to more independence. Although, living in a Personal Care Home is not living alone, it offers support and guidance to those who have always lived with a family member or in an institution for many years. It is extremely important that the staff at the Personal Care Home are especially sensitive to this population who have often experienced abuse, neglect and institutionalized living for most of their life. The transition period may take longer than it would for a Senior Citizen, so great care and patience must be a priority and no tolerance for neglectful, harsh or abusive language or actions should be accepted by the Personal Care Home management.

Individuals with intellectual disabilities often attend programs during the day time hours to learn new skills and often have jobs with real employers providing real pay. These jobs may be menial or tedious for some, but for this population bagging groceries, stuffing envelopes, gathering shopping carts, putting small plastic pieces together in a factory are rewarding and stimulating jobs to have.

Of course, like everything else, there is a financial cost associated with Personal Care Homes. Most seniors use their pensions, retirement or social security income to pay the cost for this service. The fees for Senior Citizens range greatly from Personal Care Home to Personal Care Home. In Georgia, for instance, a small PCH of 6 residents may charge anywhere from $1,300 per month to $2,000 per month. The price is sometimes determined by the location of the home, the size of the room (private or semi-private) and the services offered. Some PCH owners make special concessions to those who cannot pay the full price. Others use State programs like Medicaid funded programs that can supplement the cost if the Senior meets their eligibility requirements. The owner of the PCH will need to apply with the Medicaid program (SOURCE or CCSP etc)  in order to be a Provider for this service. Usually each state will have a Department of Human Resources, Department of Community Health or Department of Behavior and Developmental Disabilities) or something similar that can provide information on how to become a medicaid provider for residential services for the elder population.

Often, the individual with a developmental disability already has a Medicaid Waiver which grants them a certain amount of funding toward residential services. It is the waiver that allows payment to the Personal Care Home provider. This population often has a Support Coordinator or a Case Manager who helps them to make life choices and help apply for Medicaid Waivers and other programs suitable for their individual needs. They even help the individual choose which PCH they want to reside in. Again, the PCH owner has to apply with the State in order to become a Medicaid Provider for this population and to receive payment for the services. The applicant must be qualified to become a medicated provider or he or she will have to hire qualified professionals to help with this endeavor.

Of course, the state is the first place to contact when you are ready to explore opening a PCH. This work is not easy, it requires a 24 hour commitment and loving care for those that live there. It is constant cooking, cleaning, bathing, laundry and loving interaction. It’s also helping with doctor appointments, medication compliance and coordination of services.

The State will send out a booklet providing the guidelines and rules on Personal Care Homes. In Georgia, it is the Health Care Regulatory services who will send out all the information you need to get started or you may have to go to their website for an application. Use these guidelines to write your own home’s Policy and Procedures. Create the standard that you want in your home.

My advice is to write the Policy and Procedures before getting a home. This allows time to write without feeling pressured. If you get a house first, you will have to pay on a mortgage or rent while you are putting your Policies together. Also, start purchasing the furniture before you get a house. If you begin to accumulate what you need now, just store it until you are ready to move in. Many owners purchase their furniture from second-hand stores, garage sales or even from friends. Have church members, family members, coworkers and friends donate furniture to you. Be sure to tell them what you need or you’ll end up with lot of stuff you don’t need.

Some PCH owners purchase their homes for this business, while other do a lease-purchase which allows them to pay as they go. Others find success in renting a house as long as the owner is aware of what you will be using the house for and signing an affidavit that supports the agreement. Still some use the home they live in as both a PCH and their family home.

This information is just enough to get the ideas flowing. Please respond to this blog, offer insight, corrections, updates and other information that one can use in starting a Personal Care Home. Your comments are most appreciated.

I will share more information as we go along.  Let me know what topics you are most interested in.

Thanks

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