What else do the CoPs say about neglect, abuse?
Agencies “should address any allegations or evidence of patient abuse to determine if immediate care is needed, a change in the plan of care is indicated, or if a referral to an appropriate agency is warranted,” the final interpretive guidelines for the revised Home Health Conditions of Participation (CoPs) note. In addition, agencies should intervene immediately to remove staff from patient care if there are allegations of misconduct related to abuse or misappropriation of property.
Agencies should have systems in place to record, track and investigate all complaints, the interpretive guidelines state. “Written policies and procedures on the acceptance, processing, review and resolution of patient complaints should be developed and communicated to start. These policies should include intake procedures, timeframes for investigations, documentation and outcomes and actions that the agency may take to resolve patient complaints.
Complaint investigations should be incorporated into the agency’s Quality Assurance Performance Improvement program. The agency should be able to produce documentation for each complaint received that confirms that an investigation was conducted and records the investigation findings as well as the ultimate resolution of the complaint.
The documentation should also describe any actions taken by the agency to remove any risks to the patient while the complaint was being investigated.”