NEW JERSEY REGISTER
VOLUME 38, ISSUE 21
ISSUE DATE: NOVEMBER 6, 2006
LAW AND PUBLIC SAFETY
DIVISION OF CONSUMER AFFAIRS
OFFICE OF THE DIRECTOR
Personnel Services; Health Care Service Firms; Definitions
Proposed Amendment: N.J.A.C. 13:45B-14.2
Authorized By: Stephen B. Nolan, Acting Director, Division of Consumer Affairs.
Authority: N.J.S.A. 34:8-54.
Calendar Reference: See Summary below for explanation of exemption to calendar requirement.
Proposal Number: PRN 2006-360.
Submit written comments by January 5, 2007 to:
Stephen B. Nolan, Acting Director
State of New Jersey
Division of Consumer Affairs
Office of the Director
P.O. Box 45027
Newark, New Jersey 07101
The agency proposal follows:
N.J.S.A. 34:8-45.1 defines "health care services" as "any services rendered for the purpose of maintaining or restoring an individual's physical or mental health or any health related services for which a license or certification is required as a pre-condition to the rendering of such services." This law requires businesses that place individuals who provide health care services in the home of disabled persons or senior citizens or at care-giving facilities to register with the Division of Consumer Affairs (the Division) as health care service firms.
The intent of this law is to require registration for businesses that place individuals who provide health care to those who are impaired or infirm, either through injury, sickness, or advanced age, and are incapable of fully caring for themselves. The definition in the law could also be interpreted to require registration for businesses that send individuals to a home to provide services, regardless of the health or well-being of the person receiving those services, register with the Division. The Director of the Division is concerned that businesses that offer services that are not intended for the disabled or senior citizens, such as personal training services or massage, bodywork and somatic therapy services, would be required to register given the expansive definition, notwithstanding the initial language of that statute, which restricts the need for licensure to those entities arranging the placement of personnel "providing health care or personal care services in the personal residence of a person with a disability or a senior citizen age 60 or older."
To resolve this concern, the Director proposes to amend N.J.A.C. 13:45B-14.2 to define "patient" as an individual who needs help with basic life functions, including those related to personal care services. The Director also proposes to amend the definition of "health care services" to clarify that these services are provided to patients, as that term is now defined. This amendment clarifies that N.J.A.C. 13:45B-14.2 applies to entities that provide services covered by N.J.S.A. 34:8-45.1, services which are provided to impaired or infirm individuals.
As the Director has provided a 60-day comment period on this notice of proposal, this notice is exempted from the rulemaking calendar requirement pursuant to N.J.A.C. 1:30-3.3.
The Director believes that this proposed amendment will have a beneficial impact on businesses that place individuals who provide services to those who are not disabled or senior citizens. These businesses need not register with the Division as health care service firms. At the same time, those businesses that do place individuals who provide health care services to the disabled and senior citizens will continue to need to be registered and comply with the relevant rules.
The Director does not believe that the proposed amendment will affect individuals who receive services. The proposed amendment clarifies that "patients," those who are infirm or impaired, are the only individuals who receive health care services, which must be provided by registered entities. Individuals who are not "patients" may continue to receive services in the home from entities that are not registered.
The Director believes that this proposed amendment will have a positive economic impact on businesses that place individuals who provide services to those who are not disabled or elderly. These businesses will not be required to bear the cost of registering with the Division.
Federal Standard Statement
A Federal standards analysis is not required because there are no Federal laws or standards applicable to the proposed amendment.
The Director does not believe that the proposed amendment will either increase or decrease the number of jobs in New Jersey.
Agriculture Industry Impact
The Director does not expect the amendment to have any impact on the agriculture industry in the State.
Regulatory Flexibility Statement
This proposed amendment imposes no costs on small businesses. The Director does not believe that any business will need to employ professional services to comply with the requirements of this amendment. The proposed amendment does not impose any compliance, reporting or recordkeeping requirements on small businesses, as defined in the Regulatory Flexibility Act, N.J.S.A. 52:14B-16 et seq. The proposed amendment clarifies the definition of health care service firms subject to the rules. Small businesses may be included or excluded from the definition, and, therefore, the rules, depending on the services they provide.
Smart Growth Impact
The amendment will have no impact on the achievement of smart growth and implementation of the State Development and Redevelopment Plan.
Full text of the proposal follows (additions indicated in boldface thus; deletions indicated in brackets [thus]):
As used in this subchapter, the following terms shall have the following meanings unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:
"Health care services" means:
1. Any services rendered to a patient for the purpose of maintaining or restoring [an individual's] the patient's physical or mental health; or
2. Any health related services rendered to a patient for which licensure, registration or certification is required as a pre-condition to the rendering of such services.
"Patient" means an individual who needs help with basic life functions, including those related to personal care services.