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DHMH : regulatoryefficiency

Task Force on Regulatory Efficiency
Final Report,Task Force on Regulatory Efficiency
The Task Force on Regulatory Efficiency has issued its final report.  The Task Force supports 42 of the 73 proposals in the final report - 30 have been included in the Governor’s Executive Order promoting regulatory efficiency, two are being implemented by DHMH, and ten are undergoing additional review.
In April 2011, the Secretary of the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene established the Task Force on Regulatory Efficiency to conduct a cross-agency review of DHMH facility regulations to promote greater transparency, efficiency, and effectiveness.
The Task Force is co-chaired by Patrick Dooley, Assistant Secretary for Regulatory Affairs at DHMH, and Mark Luckner, Executive Director, Community Health Resources Commission (CHRC).  Six operating divisions of DHMH have a representative on the Task Force.
The purpose of the Task Force is to recommend adjustments to existing regulations that will make the Department’s oversight of facilities and programs more effective and efficient.  
A significant part of the Task Force’s work will be engagement with the public.  The Task Force will solicit public input for ideas through two comment periods.  The Task Force will later propose draft recommendations for public comment before finalizing them for presentation to the Secretary.
The review will cover regulations of all facilities licensed by DHMH, including skilled nursing facilities, assisted living facilities, community programs for individuals with mental health, substance use concerns, hospice, hospitals, programs for individuals with developmental disabilities, laboratories, adult day care and in-home services.
The Task Force on Regulatory Efficiency will consider changes to COMAR chapters listed on the Office of Health Care Quality website at:  
These include Chapters 10.05 (freestanding ambulatory care facilities), 10.07 (hospitals-includes nursing homes, RSA’s, assisted living, and other provider types), 10.10 (laboratories), 10.12 (adult day-care), 10.15 (food service facilities), 10.21 (mental hygiene), 10.22 (developmental disabilities), - 10.47 (alcohol and drug abuse administration), 10.50 (tissue banks). 
The Task Force will focus on adjustments to these regulations to promote efficiency and effectiveness, such as:
  • Ways to facilitate communication, such as electronic signature
  • Ways to encourage smart technology adoption, such as wireless call bell systems
  • Flexibility for furnishings or physical plant requirements
  • Better support for independence of residents in long-term care and other settings
  • Simplification or electronic systems for documentation without losing value 
The Task Force will not consider wholesale changes to the regulatory structure.  Such ideas, if compelling, may be referred for more in-depth consideration.