Subject 290-2-6 RULES AND REGULATIONS FOR CHILDREN'S TRANSITION CARE CENTERS
These rules are adopted and published pursuant to the Official Code of Georgia Annotated (O.C.G.A.) Sec. 49-5-1et seq.
These rules shall be known as the Rules and Regulations for Children's Transition Care Centers. The purposes of these rules are to provide for the licensing and inspection of children's transition care centers within Georgia, and to establish foster care requirements applicable to those centers that provide such services.
In these rules, unless the context otherwise requires, the words, phrases and symbols set forth herein shall mean the following:
|(a)||"Abuse" means any unjustifiable intentional or grossly negligent act, exploitation or series of acts, or omission of acts which causes injury to a person, including but not limited to verbal abuse, assault or battery, failure to provide treatment or care, or sexual harassment.|
|(b)||"Adult" means a person eighteen (18) years of age or older, who is not an individual under care of the center.|
|(c)||"Activities of daily living" means bathing, brushing teeth, combing hair, toileting, dressing, eating, grooming, and transfers or ambulation.|
|(d)|| "Applicant" means the following:
|(e)||"Behavior management" means those principles and techniques used by a center to assist a resident in facilitating self-control, addressing inappropriate behavior, and achieving positive outcomes in a constructive and safe manner. Behavior management principles and techniques shall be used in accordance with the individual comprehensive service plan, written policies and procedures governing service expectations, service plan goals, safety, security, and these rules and regulations.|
|(f)||"Center" in these rules means a children's transition care center.|
|(g)||"Chemical restraint" means drugs that are administered to manage a resident's behavior in a way that reduces the safety risk to the resident or others; that have the temporary effect of restricting the resident's freedom of movement; and that are not being used as part of a standard regimen, as specified in the child's comprehensive service plan, to treat current symptoms of a medical or psychiatric condition.|
|(h)||"Children's transition care center" means a center which provides a temporary, home-like environment for medically fragile children, technology dependent children, and children with special health care needs, up to 21 years of age, who are deemed clinically stable by a physician but are dependent on life-sustaining medications, treatments, and equipment, and who require assistance with activities of daily living to facilitate transitions from a hospital or other facility to a home or other appropriate setting.|
|(i)||"Criminal history background check" means a search as required by law of the criminal records maintained by law enforcement authorities to determine whether the applicant has a criminal record as defined in these rules.|
|(j)||"Commissioner" means the Commissioner of the Department of Human Resources.|
|(k)|| "Criminal record" means:
|(l)||"Department" means the Georgia Department of Human Resources.|
|(m)||"Director" means the chief administrative or executive officer of the center.|
|(n)||"Emergency safety interventions" mean those behavioral intervention techniques that are authorized under an approved emergency safety intervention plan and are utilized by properly trained staff in an urgent situation to prevent a child from doing immediate harm to self or others.|
|(o)||"Emergency safety intervention plan" means the plan developed by the center utilizing a nationally recognized, evidence-based, training program for emergency safety intervention, approved by the Department. The plan shall clearly identify the emergency safety interventions staff may utilize and those that may never be used.|
|(p)|| "Employee" means any
person, other than a director, employed by a center to perform any duties at
any of the center's facilities which involve personal contact between that
person and any child being cared for at the center and also includes any adult
person who resides at the center or who, with or without compensation, performs
duties for the center which involve personal contact between that person and
any child cared for by the center.
|(q)||"Exploitation" means the illegal or improper use of a person or that person's resources through undue influence, coercion, harassment, duress, deception, false representation, false pretense, or other similar means for another person's profit or advantage.|
|(r)||"Fingerprint records check determination" means a satisfactory or unsatisfactory determination by the department based upon a records check comparison of Georgia Crime Information Center (GCIC) information with fingerprints and other information in a records check application.|
|(s)||"Foster care" means supervised care in a substitute home or a children's transition care center on a 24 hour full-time basis for a temporary period of time.|
|(t)||"Foster home" means a private home where the foster parent(s) live which has been approved by the center to provide 24 hour care, lodging, supervision and maintenance for no more than six children under the age of 19.|
|(u)||"Foster parent" means an adult person approved by the center who has a satisfactory criminal history background check determination and provides care, lodging, supervision, and maintenance on a 24-hour basis for a child who must receive care out of his own home.|
|(v)||"Human services professional" means the person(s) employed by the center who is (are) responsible for providing oversight of services to children and their families in the home setting. The HSP is responsible for monitoring the residents' needs and ensuring that appropriate services are being provided and arranged for in order to meet those needs. Duties include, but are not limited to: the coordination of the center's admission evaluation; the development of the service plans; case work services as provided in the resident's service plans; and monitoring of the resident's medical, social, and other needs.|
|(w)||"Living unit" means the physical location where residents live within the center.|
|(x)||"Manual hold" means the application of physical force, without the use of any device, for the purpose of restricting the free movement of a child's body and is considered a form of restraint. A manual hold does not include briefly holding a child without undue force to calm or comfort the child, holding a child by the hand or by the shoulders or back to walk the child safely from one area to another where the child is not forcefully resisting the assistance, or assisting the child in voluntarily participating in activities of daily living.|
|(y)||"Mechanical restraint" means a device attached or adjacent to the child's body that is not a prescribed and approved medical protection device and that he or she cannot easily remove that restricts freedom of movement or normal access to his or her body. A mechanical restraint does not include devices used to assist a child with appropriate positioning or posture secondary to physical impairments or disabilities.|
|(z)||"Medical day care" means specialized services provided to medically fragile children during daytime hours, without overnight stays.|
|(aa)||"Medically fragile children" means children who are medically stable but require skilled nursing care and either specialized therapy or specialized medical equipment and supplies.|
|(bb)||"Neglect" means the absence or omission of essential services to the degree that it harms or threatens with harm the physical or emotional health of a person.|
|(cc)||"Nursing services" means those services that may only be provided by licensed professional nurses pursuant to the regulations established under Georgia law. O.C.G.A. 43-26-3et seq.|
|(dd)|| "Owner" means
any individual or any person affiliated with a corporation, partnership, or
association with 10 percent or greater ownership interest in the business or
center licensed as a children's transition care center and who:
|(ee)||"Placement" means any activity by any person that provides assistance to a parent or guardian in locating and affecting the move of a child to a foster home or adoptive home, including assessing suitability of homes for placement. Counseling with respect to options available, legal services, or services as an agent for purposes of notice or withdrawal of consent by the birth parent does not constitute placement activity.|
|(ff)||"Preliminary records check application" means an application for a preliminary records check determination on forms provided by the department.|
|(gg)||"Preliminary records check determination" means a satisfactory or unsatisfactory determination by the department based only upon a comparison of Georgia Crime Information Center (GCIC) information with other than fingerprint information regarding the person upon whom the records check is being performed.|
|(hh)||"Professional services" means services provided by a licensed or certified professional such as an audiologist, clinical social worker, dentist, dietician, family therapist, licensed professional counselor, occupational therapist, nurse, optometrist, physical therapist, physician, podiatrist, psychologist, respiratory therapist, speech-language pathologist and others.|
|(ii)||"Records check application" means two sets of classifiable fingerprints, a records search fee to be established by the department by rule and regulation, payable in such form as the department may direct to cover the cost of a fingerprint records check, and an affidavit by the applicant disclosing the nature and date of any arrest, charge, or conviction of the applicant for the violation of any law; except for motor vehicle parking violations, whether or not the violation occurred in this state, and such additional information as the department may require.|
|(jj)||"Respite care" means the provision of intermittent and temporary substitute care or supervision to a medically fragile child on behalf of and in the absence of the caregiver, for the purpose of providing relief from stress or responsibilities associated with providing continuous care or supervision, to enable the caregiver to continue the provision of care in the home.|
|(kk)||"Satisfactory criminal history background check determination" means a written determination that a person for whom a records check was performed was found to have no criminal record.|
|(ll)||"Seclusion" means the unobserved, involuntary confinement of a child, due to imminent risk of harm to self or others, in a room or an area from which the child is physically prevented from leaving.|
|(mm)||"Supervision" means the continued responsibility of the licensee to take reasonable action to provide for the health, safety, and well-being of a resident while under the supervision of the licensee or the agent or employee of the licensee, including protection from physical, emotional, social, moral, financial harm and personal exploitation while in care. The licensee is responsible for providing the degree of supervision indicated by a child's age, developmental level, physical, emotional, and social needs.|
|(nn)||"Time-out" means a behavior management technique that involves the brief separation of a child from the group or activity, not to exceed twenty (20) minutes, during which time the child is continually observed by a staff member. During "time-out" a child is not physically restricted to an enclosed room or area.|
|(oo)||"Transfer agreement" means a written contract with other institutions providing for transfer of a child in care from the center to the other institution when the center cannot provide the level of care required by the child, and providing for the exchange of medical and other information at the time of the transfer.|
|(pp)||"Unsatisfactory criminal history background check determination" means a written determination that a person for whom a records check was performed has a criminal record.|
|(qq)||"Weekend camp" means a planned program for medically fragile children with special health care needs that consists typically of a short residential stay from Friday afternoon through Sunday evening.|
|(1)||Each center shall have a clearly identified governing body which shall be empowered and responsible for determining all policies and procedures and ensuring compliance with all applicable state and federal laws and regulations.|
|(2)||The chairperson or chief executive officer of the governing body shall complete a statement of responsibility on behalf of the governing body acknowledging the same in connection with any application for a license on a form provided by the department. If a center is individually owned, then the owner(s) will complete the statement of responsibility.|
|(3)||If a center is governed by a board, there shall be policies and procedures for periodic rotation of members which include term limits.|
History Background Checks for Owners Required. Prior to approving any license
for a new center and periodically as established by the department by rule and
regulation, the department shall require an owner to submit a records check
application so as to permit the department to obtain criminal history
background information on the owner.
|(2)|| A children's transition care center
license shall not be issued, and any license issued shall be revoked where it
has been determined that the owner has a criminal record involving any of the
following covered crimes, as outlined in O.C.G.A. Sec.
|(3)|| An owner with a valid
children's transition care center license who is determined to have a criminal
record for any of the crimes listed in Rule .05(2)(a) -(n) above, shall not
have the license revoked prior to a hearing being held before a hearing officer
pursuant to Chapter 13 of Title 50, the Georgia Administrative Procedure Act.
History Background Checks for Director and Employees Required. Prior to serving
as a director of a licensed center, a person shall submit a records check
application and receive a satisfactory determination.
|(5)||Criminal History Background Checks for Foster Parents Required. No center that provides care in foster homes shall place a child in a foster home unless the foster parent(s) of the home and other adult persons that reside in the home or provide care to children placed in the home have obtained criminal records checks as required by law.|
|(6)||No child shall continue to be placed in such foster care home unless the foster parent(s) also subsequently receive a satisfactory fingerprint records check determination.|
|(7)|| Licenses. No person, partnership,
association, corporation or entity shall operate a children's transition care
center in the state without first obtaining a license to operate the center by
demonstrating compliance with the necessary requirements set forth in these
|(8)|| Temporary License. The
department may in its discretion issue a temporary license if the health and
safety of the children to be served by the center will not be endangered. A
temporary license will be valid for a specified period not to exceed one (1)
year and may be issued in the following instances:
|(9)||Restricted License. The department may in its discretion issue a restricted license in lieu of a temporary or regular license. The restricted license may be granted either in connection with the initial application process for a license or as a result of a subsequent determination made by the department concerning compliance with these rules. The restriction shall appear on the face of the license and shall restrict a center from providing care or services which are beyond the capability of the licensee to provide. The restriction may include but is not limited to the number and/or age of the children served by the center.|
|(10)||Qualifications Requirement. In order to obtain or retain a license, the director of the center and its employees must be qualified, as defined in these rules, to administer or work in a center. The department may presume that the director and employees are qualified, subject to satisfactory determinations on the criminal history background checks. However, the department may require additional reasonable verification of the qualifications of the director and employees either at the time of application for a license or at any time during the license period whenever the department has reason to believe that a director or employee is not qualified under these rules to administer or work in a center.|
|(11)||License is Nontransferable. A license to operate a center is not transferable in any way. Each license shall be returned to the department immediately upon the suspension, revocation or restriction of the license or upon the termination, sale or change in ownership of the center.|
|(12)||Renewal of License. A license will be renewed upon a determination by the department that the center presents satisfactory evidence of meeting the requirements set forth in these rules.|
|(13)|| Exemptions. Anyone
operating or desiring to provide a service believed to be exempt from licensure
shall apply to the department for exemption. The exemptions granted by the
department are exemptions from licensure, and do not affect the authority of
local, regional or state health department officials, the state fire marshal or
local fire prevention officials to inspect facilities. These rules shall not
apply to the following kinds of programs providing care to children:
|(1)|| An application
for a license to operate a center shall be submitted to the department on the
forms provided by the department.
|(2)||The department may deny a license or otherwise restrict a license for any applicant who has had a license denied, revoked, or suspended within one year of the date of the application or who has transferred ownership or governing authority of an agency, facility, center, or entity subject to regulations by the department within one year of the date of a new application when such transfer was made in order to avert denial, revocation, or suspension of a license.|
|(3)||A center shall not begin operation without departmental approval.|
department is authorized and empowered to conduct investigations and on-site
inspections of any center required by these rules to be licensed. The proposed
and current licensee and staff shall cooperate with any inspection or
investigation by responding truthfully to any legitimate departmental inquiry.
|(1)||General. A child shall not be deprived of any rights, benefits, or
privileges guaranteed by law based solely on his/her status as a resident of
the center. Children's right include but are not limited to the following:
|(2)||Personal Property. A child
shall be permitted to retain and use or wear his/her personal property in
his/her immediate living quarters unless deemed medically inappropriate or
socially disruptive by a physician and so documented in the case record.
|(3)||Religion. A child shall be permitted the free exercise of religion. Upon the child's or the child's representative's request, and if necessary at his/her expense, the center shall make arrangements for a child's attendance at religious services of the child's choice. However, no religious beliefs or practices, or attendance at religious services, may be imposed upon any child.|
|(4)||Every child or child's representative shall be permitted to inspect and copy all of the child's clinical and other records concerning the child's care and maintenance kept by the center.|
|(5)||Center staff may terminate visits or provide other accommodations for the visit if they are so requested by the child or the child's representative, or if the visitor is involved in behavior violating other children's rights.|
|(1)||Program Purpose. In accordance with these rules and regulations, a licensed children's transition care center shall develop, implement and comply with written policies and procedures that specify its philosophy, purpose, and program orientation. Such policies and procedures shall identify the characteristics of the children it serves, including the referral sources. The policies and procedures for transition care services shall include that the services are limited to short term stays of one to fourteen (14) consecutive days and for long-term stays of up to ninety (90) consecutive days depending on the transition needs of the child. Stays of over ninety (90) consecutive days must be individually approved by the Department by waiver, and may not exceed 12 consecutive months.|
|(2)||Program Description and Implementation. In accordance with these
rules and regulations, a licensed children's transition care center shall
develop, implement and comply with written policies and procedures that
describe the range of services and the manner in which such services will be
provided by the center. Such policies and procedures shall describe how
identified services will be provided, the specific emergency safety
intervention plan, including the emergency safety interventions, that will be
used, and how such services will be assessed and evaluated. A program
description must show what services are provided directly by the center and
what services are provided by other available community or contract resources.
The program description must include which of the following services will be
provided in addition to transition care services:
|(3)||Director. The governing body
of the center shall designate a director who shall be authorized to manage the
|(4)||Finances. The governing body
shall provide for the preparation of an annual budget and approve such budget.
Copies of the current year's budget and expenditure records shall be maintained
for examination and review by the department.
shall be sufficient staff members on duty at all times to assure each child
proper care according to his or her needs. When children are present at the
center, there shall be, at a minimum, one awake registered nurse (RN) on duty
per residence at all times.
|(7)||Reporting of Serious Occurrences or Incidents. Whenever the
children's transition care center has reason to believe any of the occurrences
or incidents listed below has occurred, the center shall make a report
summarizing the occurrence or incident to the Department of Human Resources,
Office of Regulatory Services, Residential Child Care Unit.
|(8)||Child Abuse Reports. Whenever the children's transition care center has reason to believe that a child in care has been subjected to child abuse it shall cause a report of such abuse to be made to the child welfare agency of the county of occurrence providing protective services as designated by the Department of Human Resources (Division of Family and Children Services) or in the absence of such an agency to an appropriate police authority or district attorney in accordance with the requirements of O.C.G.A. Sec. 19-7-5. A copy of such report shall also be filed with the Office of Regulatory Services.|
|(1)||The center shall have an on-going comprehensive, integrated, self-assessment quality improvement process which provides assurance that care is provided at all times in compliance with accepted standards of professional practice.|
|(2)|| The center shall have written plans,
policies and procedures addressing quality assurance which include:
|(3)|| Quality assessment and improvement
activities shall be based on the systematic collection, review, and evaluation
of data which, at a minimum, includes:
|(4)|| When problems are identified in the
provision of care, there shall be evidence of corrective actions, including
ongoing monitoring, revisions of policies and procedures, educational
intervention and changes in the provision of services.
|(1)|| A center shall only admit medically
fragile children whose known health care or medical support needs can be met by
the center in accordance with its program purpose and program description.
to admission, the center shall:
|(3)||The center shall comply with the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children when admitting children from another state.|
admission policies and procedures shall be established and implemented and
shall include the following requirements:
|(5)|| Upon admission, a written description of
the center shall be provided to the child, the parent(s) or guardian(s),or
placing agency and shall include:
|(1)||Health Service Plan. A
written assessment and health service plan shall be developed by a RN on the
day of admission and must include preliminary discharge plans for the child,
including the anticipated date of discharge.
|(2)||Comprehensive Service Plan. The center shall complete a full
written assessment of each child admitted for care and of each child's family
and develop an individual written comprehensive service plan for each child
based on the assessments within ten (10) days of admission. If an assessment is
not completed within ten (10) days, the reasons for the delay shall be
documented in the child's case record and such documentation shall include
statements indicating when the assessment is expected to be completed.
|(1)||During a child's placement in a center, the preliminary plans for discharge required by Rule .12(1) shall be adjusted according to the child's circumstances. At the time of admission, a center shall initiate an aftercare plan that identifies the supports and resources that the child and child's family are expected to need following discharge.|
|(2)||Emergency discharges are authorized when the health and safety of the child or other children in residence might be endangered by the child's further placement in the center. At least 72 hours of prior notice of discharge shall be provided in writing to the parent(s) or guardian(s), or placement agency. If such notice is not possible, the reasons shall be documented in the child's case record.|
|(3)|| When a child is discharged, a center
shall compile a complete written discharge summary within fourteen days of the
discharge. Such summary shall include:
|(4)||A copy of the completed discharge summary shall be provided to the child's parent(s) or guardian(s), or placement agency representative when it is completed. The center shall keep a record of the discharge summary in the center's files.|
|(1)||Casework Services. All children in care and families of children in care shall receive case work services as provided in their comprehensive service plan from their assigned HSP or other appropriate professionals (internal and external of the center) who shall meet with and counsel with the children. The results of such counseling shall be recorded in the children's case records. The purposes of such services are to identify and monitor the children's and families' progress relative to the needs, goals and objectives identified in child care assessments and service plans and to discuss any problems being encountered by or with the children in care.|
|(2)||Health Services. The center
shall provide for a comprehensive program of services to meet the health care
needs and medical support needs for the child, as well as preventive, routine,
and emergency medical and dental care for all children.
|(3)||Educational and Vocational Services. A center shall not admit a
child unless an educational program commensurate with the specific educational
and vocational needs of the child can be provided.
|(4)||Recreation and Leisure. The center shall provide for a program of indoor and outdoor recreational and leisure activities. When providing these activities, it shall utilize the community's cultural, social, and recreational resources whenever possible and appropriate. Children's activities as stated in their service plans shall provide for leisure and recreational time. A center shall procure and maintain a variety of recreational and leisure equipment and supplies such as games, sporting equipment, reading materials, and art supplies.|
|(1)|| Respite Care General
Requirements. A center may provide a comprehensive program of respite
care services to medically fragile children, whose known health care or medical
support needs can be met by the center in accordance with its program purpose
and program description.
|(2)||Admission for Respite
Services. Licensed children's transition care centers may receive
medically fragile children for respite care services from their caregiver,
parents, guardians, custodians, or persons serving in loco parentis.
|(3)||Respite Care Health
Services. The center shall provide for a comprehensive program of
services to meet the health care needs and medical support needs of children
admitted for respite care. Children admitted for respite care shall be provided
services in accordance with all the requirements in rules
290-2-6-.15 and Rules
|(4)||Case Record. Each child
admitted for respite care shall have a case record that includes, at a minimum,
the following information:
|(5)||During a child's residency at a center for respite services, the center shall make arrangements to ensure that the child's educational needs are met.|
|(6)||Discharge from Respite Care.
At the time of admission, a child's HSP shall develop preliminary discharge
plans for the child, which identifies the child's anticipated date of
|(7)||Weekend Camps. Medically fragile children may be admitted to the center for the purpose of attending a weekend camp. Admission, service, and discharge requirements for weekend camps shall be the same as those required for respite services and described in Rules .15(1) through (6).|
|(1)||General Requirements. A licensed center may provide a
comprehensive program of medical day care services for medically fragile
children whose known health or medical support needs can be met by the center
in accordance with its program purpose and program description.
|(2)|| Medical Day Care Health Services.
Children admitted for medical day care services shall receive timely,
qualified health services as needed or in the same manner normally received
when living in their usual environment or place of residence.
|(3)||Case Records. Each child
admitted for medical day care shall have a case record that includes, at a
minimum, the following information:
|(1)||A center shall not engage in temporary placement activities in Georgia unless licensed as a children's transition care center and approved by the department to provide for care in foster homes.|
|(2)||Foster care shall be considered only after it has been established that it is necessary for the physical and/or emotional well-being of the child.|
|(3)||No more than 6 children under the age of 19 may reside in a foster home unless it is an intact sibling group and it is in the best interests of each of the children to be placed in the same foster home.|
|(4)|| Orientation Prior to
Foster Care Application. The center shall provide orientation information in
person or in written form to prospective foster parent(s) to assist them in
making an informed decision about applying to become a foster parent. The
format of the orientation must be documented in the applicant's file. The
orientation information must include at least the following:
|(5)|| Training for Prospective
Foster Parent(s). Once an application to become a foster parent has been
submitted, and prior to the approval of an applicant for placement of a child
in foster care, the center shall provide and document training for the
applicant in at least the following topics:
|(6)|| Minimum Requirements for Prospective
Foster Families. Home Study. The center shall make a thorough evaluation of
each prospective foster family and document this evaluation in a foster home
study report which shall be updated as changes in the required home study
information occur and include at least the following:
|(7)|| Services Prior to Foster Care
|(8)||Home visits shall be conducted by the center at least monthly in order to verify that the foster parent(s) are delivering care in a safe and healthy environment to the children, in accordance with these rules and regulations and agency policies and procedures. Such visits shall include observation of the foster child with at least one of the foster parent(s).|
center shall provide an annual evaluation of the strengths and needs of the
foster family and assessment of the best way to maximize the foster care
experience for the foster family and the children placed with them. This
evaluation shall be shared with the foster family as evidenced by the signature
of the foster parent(s) on the evaluation. Documentation of supervision of the
placement by the agency shall include:
|(10)|| Maintenance of Foster Care
|(11)|| Agency Records and Reports.
|(1)||The center shall develop and implement policies and procedures for children and families or guardians to voice grievances and to submit written grievances without fear of retaliation.|
|(2)||All written grievances submitted by a child shall be recorded in the case record as well as a separate grievance or complaint log showing the grievance, description or method of explanation or resolution, and involved staff.|
|(1)||The center shall develop and implement policies and procedures that prohibit child abuse and sexual exploitation of children in care. Such policies and procedures shall incorporate requirements for the reporting of child abuse and sexual exploitation in accordance with State law.|
|(2)|| All reports of
alleged child abuse and sexual exploitation of children in care shall also be
reported immediately to the Child Care Licensing Section of the department.
|(1)|| A center shall
provide each child with meals and snacks of serving sizes dependent upon the
age of the child based upon nutrition guidelines as established by the United
States Department of Agriculture Child Care Food Program or as prescribed by
the child's physician.
|(2)|| Food services of a center licensed to
care for thirteen or more children are subject to the provisions of the Rules
and Regulations of the Department of Human Resources for Food Service, Chapter
290-5-14, if the center provides food services in a centralized kitchen area.
Such a center must obtain a valid food service permit. Centers licensed to care
for twelve or less children, or not required to obtain a food Service permit
shall meet the following requirements:
|(1)||Infection Control. Each
center shall have procedures for infection control. Policies and procedures
shall be written, assembled and available to all staff to reduce the risk of
infections originating, occurring, or acquired in the center. Such policies and
procedures shall be included in an on-going prevention training program.
|(2)||Physical Plant and Safety. Each center shall be physically separate and apart from any other facility licensed by the Department under O.C.G.A. 49-5-12.|
|(4)||Accessibility. All centers serving a child or children dependent
on a wheelchair or other device for mobility shall have:
|(6)||Lavatory and Bathing
|(7)||Living Room. For centers licensed on or after the effective date of these rules, the center shall maintain a living room or den for the children residing in a living unit. Such space shall be equipped with comfortable furnishings suitable for relaxation and social interaction.|
|(8)||Dining Area. The center shall maintain a dining area that is furnished to permit children, staff, and guests to eat together in a small group or groups.|
|(9)||Climate Control. The center shall be maintained at a temperature range of sixty-five (65) degrees Fahrenheit to eighty-two (82) degrees Fahrenheit, depending upon the season of the year.|
|(10)||Ceilings and Walls. All ceilings shall be at least seven (7) feet in height. Ceiling and walls shall be of good repair.|
|(11)||Windows. All windows that can be opened and that are used for ventilation shall have insect window screens. Windows and screens must be in good repair.|
|(12)|| The center shall be kept clean and free
of hazards to health and safety and of debris and pests.
|(13)||Exterior Grounds. Exterior
grounds of the center shall be free of hazards to health and safety.
|(15)||Children shall not be required to sleep in areas of the premises that are not routinely used as or specifically designated as bedrooms such as doorways, hallways, bathrooms, closets, crawl spaces, fire escapes, kitchens, communal living areas, etc.|
|(1)||Plans of Correction. If the Department determines that either a
center or a facility applying to become licensed as a center does not comply
with the rules, the Department shall provide written notice specifying the
rule(s) violated and setting a time for the center not to exceed ten (10)
working days within which to file an acceptable written plan of correction
where the Department has determined that an opportunity to correct is
permissible. If such plan of correction is determined not acceptable to the
Department because it does not adequately correct the identified violation, the
Department will advise the center or facility applying to become licensed that
the plan of correction is not acceptable. The Department may permit the center
to submit a revised plan of correction.
|(2)||All adverse actions to enforce the Rules and Regulations for Children's Transition Care Centers shall be initiated in accordance with the Rules and Regulations for Enforcement of Licensing Requirements, Chapter 290-1-6, and O.C.G.A. §§ 49-5-12 and 49-5-12.1, Penalties for Violation of Child Welfare Agency Laws and Regulations and § 49-5-60et seq. and the requirements set forth herein.|
|(3)|| Required Notifications for
Revocations and Suspensions. The center shall notify each child's
parents and/or legal guardians of the Department's actions to revoke the
license or seek an emergency suspension of the center's license to operate.
|(1)|| In accordance
notwithstanding other remedies available to the department which may be pursued
at the same time, the commissioner or his designee may issue emergency orders.
Such orders may include the following:
|(2)|| An emergency
order shall contain the following:
|(3)||Unless otherwise provided in the order, an emergency order shall become effective upon its service to the owner, the director, or any other agent, employee, or person in charge of the center at the time of the service of the order.|
|(4)||Prior to issuing an emergency order, the commissioner or his designee may consult with persons knowledgeable in the field of child care and a representative of the center to determine if there is a potential for greater adverse effects on children in care as a result of the emergency order.|
|(1)|| The center
shall prepare for potential emergency situations that may affect the care of
children by the development of an effective disaster preparedness plan that
identifies emergency situations and outlines an appropriate course of action.
The plan must be reviewed and revised annually, as appropriate, including any
related written agreements.
|(1)||The department may, in its discretion, grant waivers and variances of specific rules upon application or petition being filed by a center. The department may establish conditions which must be met by the center in order to operate under the waiver or variance granted. Waivers and variances may be granted in accordance with the following considerations:|
|(2)||Variance. A variance may be granted by the department upon a showing by the applicant or petitioner that the particular rule or regulation that is the subject of the variance request should not be applied as written because strict application of the rule would cause undue hardship. The applicant or petitioner must also show that adequate standards affording protection for the health, safety and care of the children exist and will be met in lieu of the exact requirements of the rule or regulations in question.|
|(3)||Waiver. The department may dispense entirely with the enforcement of a rule or regulation upon a showing by the applicant or petitioner that the purpose of the rule or regulation is met through equivalent standards affording equivalent protection for the health, safety and care of the children.|
|(4)||Experimental Variance or Waiver. The department may grant waivers and variances to allow experimentation and demonstration of new and innovative approaches to delivery of services upon a showing by the applicant or petitioner that the intended protections afforded by the rule or regulation which is the subject of the request are met and that the innovative approach has the potential to improve service delivery.|
In the event that any rule, sentence, clause or phrase of any of these rules and regulations may be construed by any court of competent jurisdiction to be invalid, illegal, unconstitutional, or otherwise unenforceable, such determination or adjudication shall in no manner affect the remaining rules or portions thereof. The remaining rules or portions thereof shall remain in full force and effect, as if such rule or portions thereof so determined, declared or adjudged invalid or unconstitutional were not originally a part of these rules.