RCFEs with existing internet service must provide at least one computer, smartphone, tablet, or other device that residents can use for videoconferencing.
A.B. 665 was signed by the Governor in October 2021 and requires residential facilities serving adults, residential care facilities for persons with chronic life-threatening illness, and residential care facilities for the elderly (RCFEs) with existing internet service to provide at least one internet access device that can support real-time interactive applications, is equipped with videoconferencing technology and is dedicated for resident use.
The device must have a microphone and camera and be dedicated for client use. The facility must make the device available in a manner that gives the resident privacy while using it. All residents must have shared access to the device during reasonable hours.
Existing law imposes criminal penalties on a person who violates this rule.
Resident bill of rights was amended to add additional rights for association, privacy, and presenting grievances.
SB 975 went into effect this summer, strengthening the resident bill of rights to include that a resident has the right to associate privately with anyone of their choosing and to use the technology of their choice. Specifically, the resident bill of rights was amended to add the following rights:
- A resident is entitled to treat his or her living quarters as his or her home and, subject to rules designed to protect the privacy, health and safety of other residents, has no fewer rights than any other resident of the state, including, but not limited to:
- Associating and communicating privately with persons of the patient’s choice,
- Purchasing and using technology of the patient’s choice, including, but not limited to, technology that may facilitate virtual visitation with family and other persons, provided operation and use of such technology shall not violate any individual’s right to privacy under state or federal law.
- To present grievances and recommend changes in policies, procedures and services to the manager or staff of the residential care home, government officials or any other person without restraint, interference, coercion, discrimination or reprisal from the residential care home.
- To have access to representatives of the Department of Public Health or the Office of the Long-Term Care Ombudsman.