Assisted Living: Resident Bill of Rights

Posted by: The Bristal

Dear Maryellen,

Can you tell us if there is some type of bill of rights in NY State for residents of assisted living facilities? I have heard all good things about The Bristal in Lynbrook, NY. Thanks. -Richard

Dear Richard,

The New York State Department of Health supervises adult care homes (residential care facilities for adults) throughout the state. Here are the Patient Bill of Rights adopted by The Bristal Assisted Living Communities for your review. I hope this gives you the information you need.

1. You have the right to receive courteous, fair and respectful care and treatment, and not be physically, verbally, or emotionally abused or neglected in any manner.

2. You have the right to exercise your civil and religious liberties, including the right to make personal decisions, and to rely on The Bristal’s staff in exercising these liberties.

3. You have the right to private written and verbal communications or visits with anyone of your choice, or to deny or end such communications or visits.

4. You have the right to receive and send mail or any correspondence unopened and without interception or interference by the staff or Operator of The Bristal.

5. You have the right to manage your own financial affairs. However, you may authorize the staff of the home to administer your money or personal property. Such authorization must be in writing and agreed to by you and your designee. All transactions involving your money or personal property must be accounted for in your financial record maintained by The Bristal. You are entitled to a quarterly accounting of any financial transactions you authorize the staff or operator of The Bristal the home to perform on your behalf.

6. You have the right to have your personal, social, financial and medical records kept in confidence.

7. You have the right, if you are a resident of a Private Proprietary Home for Adults, to receive a written statement of the customary services that the home will provide you and any additional services which will be provided if you need them. Your Admission Agreement must include a written statement of all your monthly fees and expenses. No fees in excess of those stated in your Admission Agreement can be charged you without your approval unless you are advised 30 days in advance or if the additional fee charged is to cover emergency services.

8. You have the right to end your admission agreement, subject to the conditions for notice established in your Admission Agreement.

9. You have the right to a written statement from The Bristal 30 days prior to transfer or termination of your Admission Agreement.

10. You have the right to present grievances or recommendations on behalf of yourself or others. These may be presented, without fear or reprisal or punishment to The Bristal’s staff or operator, to government officials or to any other person.

11. You have the right to join within or outside of The Bristal to work for improvements in care.

12. You have the right to have privacy in treatment and care for personal needs.

13. You have the right to keep possessions as space allows and to be assured of security for any personal possessions stored by The Bristal.

14. You have the right to receive compensation for services you perform for The Bristal or the staff.

15. You have the right to not be coerced or required to perform the work of staff members or contractual work.

16. You have the right to receive a copy of the final report of the most recent inspection performed by New York State Department of Health.

17. You have the right, if you are a recipient of Supplemental Security (SSI) or Home Relief, to receive a monthly personal allowance to buy items which are not ordinarily provided by the home.

18. You have the right to a statement of the rules of The Bristal and an explanation of your responsibility to obey all reasonable rules.

19. You have the right to have your version of the events leading to an accident or incident recorded on The Bristal’s accident or incident report.

20. You have the right to object if The Bristal terminates your Admission Agreement against your will.

21. You have the right to at least 30 days advance notice of any change in the facility’s rate or charges for supplemental services.

22. You have the right to organize and maintain a Resident Council.

23. You have the right to privacy in your room, subject to access by facility staff.

24. You have the right not to be physically restrained nor locked in your room at any time.

25. You have the right to leave and return to the facility grounds at reasonable hours.

26. You are not required to give any gratuity (i.e., tip or gift) in any form for services provided or arranged for in accordance with law or regulations. In addition, staff of The Bristal may not accept any gratuity (tips or gifts).

Maryellen McKeon

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