Recently, more and more independent living facilities have been providing residents with in-home health care. While the practice is extremely commonplace inside assisted living facilities, it has been fairly uncommon within independent living communities because independent living facilities insurance doesn’t necessarily cover liability that may arise from these services, whereas assisted living facilities are licensed and regulated to provide such services.
This is where the problem arises. Independent living facilities and communities are unregulated in most states. This leaves the facility owners and those they employ to provide the health care services that their residents request at risk for lawsuits because their independent living facilities insurance does not see that as one of the areas that needs coverage.
As the practice becomes more and more commonplace, the potential for increased regulation increases exponentially. Because of this independent living facility operators and owners need to ensure that they are following the most updated list of regulations to protect themselves from increased liability that may not be covered by the policy that they currently hold.
If an owner of an independent living facility decides to provide residents with these types of health care services, they should also review the laws of the state about what is required in terms of licensing. Because assisted living facilities are required to be licensed and regulated, there are certain guidelines that would stipulate that a business is actually considered an assisted, rather than independent, living facility, and violation of these laws would cause significant problems for the owner of the community, including the possibility of shutting it down altogether.
After looking into these laws, if a state independent living facilities to provide in home health care, owners need to separate any third-party service providers from their business as a facility to ensure that liability does not fall on the independent living facility, but rather on the third-party service provider.
As an additional precaution, all independent living facilities owners who are currently providing in home health care should go over their current coverage and discuss with an insurance agent about whether their independent living facilities insurance policy can be adjusted to cover these types of claims. Otherwise, they might be subjected to a major financial burden if there was ever an error made in the health care provided. Knowing all of the laws and regulations when treading new ground in an industry can only benefit everyone in the long run.