Our Licensing & Rulemaking teams have spent the better part of 18 months working with hundreds of folks from numerous associations and licensed facilities as part of our regulatory reform initiative.  We’ve been overhauling 18 Articles of regulations for Healthcare Institutions and Behavioral Health Service Agencies including hospitals, skilled nursing facilities, outpatient surgery and treatment centers, recovery care, adult therapeutic foster homes, assisted living, home health agencies, hospice facilities, DUI services; residential treatment centers and midwives.  It’s been a long road- and we’re in the final-stretch now. 

Our teams are busy going through some final revisions to the 600 pages of new Rules, which we’ll be filing next week.  We’ll have an October 1 implementation date on each of the packages.  That’ll give our licensees a chance to learn the new rules before they’re expected to comply with them; it’ll give our surveyors time to learn the new rules so we can survey to them properly; and it’ll give AHCCCS the time that they need to figure out some reimbursement issues. 

As an added bonus- the state budget that was signed by the Governor on Monday gives us extended “exempt” rulemaking authority through April of 2014…  meaning that we’ll be able to make additional revisions as we implement the new regulations and find areas that can use tweaking.