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COVID 19 March 28, 2020 - IHCA

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COVID 19 March 28, 2020

Posted Mar 28, 20207 min Read


On-Boarding Employees Fingerprinting – Clarifying Guidance for Comprehensive Care Facilities

C § 16-28-13-4(a) (“Criminal History of Nurse Aides and Other Unlicensed Employees”) provides:

(a)   Except as provided in subsection (b), a person who:
(1)   operates or administers a health care facility; or
(2)   operates an entity in the business of contracting to provide nurse aides or other unlicensed employees for a health care facility;
shall apply within three (3) business days from the date a person is employed as nurse aide or other unlicensed employee for a copy of the person’s state nurse aide registry report from the state department and a limited criminal history from the Indiana central repository for criminal history information under IC 10-13-3 or another source allowed by law.

This statute requires that the facility owner or staffing agency “apply” for the limited criminal history, but not that the requested report actually be obtained. All ISDH requires as proof of compliance is documentation that a facility has applied for either the limited criminal history or the more extensive fingerprint-based history available through the Indiana State Police.

This guidance does not affect or relax the requirements of IC 16-28-13-3 (“Crimes barring employment at certain health care facilities”) or 42 CFR §483.12(a) (“Freedom from abuse, neglect, and exploitation”).

Personal Care Aide – Procedure Card

The Personal Care Aide (PCA) position provides staff that are trained in specific duties.  The PCA PROCEDURE CARD has been develop to assist the PCA and other staff in identifying the procedures the PCA is trained to perform.

COVID-19 Infection Control Webinar

Tuesday, March 31, 2020 at 11:00AM EST

Assisted Living and Home-Based Residential Groups

Join ISDH presenters for a one-hour education and Q&A session on infection control practices for professionals in home-based, residential settings that serve all age groups.

Presented by: Indiana State Department of Health COVID-19 Response Team Members

Jennifer Spivey, MSN, RN, CNOR, CIC®, FAPIC
Infection Preventionist, ISDH

Deanna Paddack, RN
Chief Nurse Consultant, ISDH

Dan Rusyniak, MD
Chief Medical Officer, Indiana FSSA

Please join this video meeting at:

Join with audio only:
Phone Number: (669) 800-5335
Passcode: 778 4985

Download COVID-19 Infection Control Webinar Flyer

ISDH Issues 4th Waiver for Comprehensive Care

The Indiana State Department of Health released a waiver for comprehensive care facilities to provide services in alternative settings, perform emergency remodels and structural changes, perform emergency bed changes, and waived access and visitation rights (410 IAC 16.2-3.1-8).  Each are described briefly below:

  • Care in alternative settings.  This waiver is intended to help implement the recently approved 1135 waiver granted by CMS so that care can be rendered to a resident regardless of the bed certification type and be provided in a unlicensed space in the same facility or in a different facility not licensed to provide skilled nursing care.  These waivers are for licensing and regulation and to dot directly speak to payment, however IHCA understand that Indiana Medicaid is working on those matters as well.  To obtain approval for either of these alternatives a comprehensive care facility should email Matt Foster, Brenda Buroker, Tammy Alley or Miriam Buffington an email that states:
    • The facility has “declared a COVID-19 facility emergency”;
    • Will render care and required services to a resident in the facility, but in a bed that is not certified for the reimbursement program the resident is enrolled in (i.e. rendering care for a Medicaid patient in a Medicare only bed); or
    • Will render care and required services to a resident relocated to an unlicensed space within the facility or in a different facility not licensed to provide skilled nursing care with the following information (1) immediate notice of the details of the relocation (resident name, new location, expected length of relocation); (2) that the relocation facility continues to meet all the resident’s care and safety needs; and (3) the facility notifies ISDH when the resident returns to their prior room or to a different room in the licensed space.

The ISDH would prefer to know about use of either of these options ahead of time.  A facility can declare and notify the ISDH as soon as possible, particularly to prepare for coming needs.  These actions also need to be taken in context of other regulations both still in effect and waived, such as the waiver for transfer and discharge that still require notice before the transfer and discharge but can be done so immediately rather than with 30 days notice.

  • Remodels and structural changes.  ISDH is waiving certain application fees, notice and approvals for remodels and structural changes under 410 IAC 16.2-3.1-2(d) so long as no later than three days after the completion certain notices are given and drawings are provided.  Temporary approval with retroactive effect is also offered in the waiver.  Certain procedures also come into play depending on whether the facility desires to make the change permanent or not.
  • Emergency bed changes.  ISDH is waiving certain application fees, notice and approvals for certain bed changes under 410 IAC 16.2-3.1-2(e) provided notice is given and a drawing and narrative of the bed change that has occurred or will occur is provided.  Temporary approval with retroactive effect is also offered in the waiver.  Some bed changes may be made permanent under certain circumstances, but will also be reviewed in context of applicable law (circumvention of the CON laws will not be permitted).
  • Access and visitation rights.  410 IAC 16.2-3.1-8 has been waived so to comply with CMS and ISDH guidance to restrict visitors to long term care facilities.

There are certain to be questions about how the first three waivers above will work in practice.  Please contact Zach Cattell at with questions.

Personal Care Attendant (PCA) – Registry Spreadsheet

The Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH) Division of Long Term Care and the Nurse Aide Registry is requesting that following the successful completion of PCA training the linked spreadsheet below be used to submit the new PCAs name to the registry.  The spreadsheet should then be emailed to:

Access Personal Care Attendant (PCA) – Registry Spreadsheet here.

COVID-19 and Issues with Postal Carriers and Mail Delivery

Getting mail is one of the primary ways for our residents to stay connected to loved ones as well as to continue their important everyday routines. We have been made aware by several of our provider members about issues with mail delivery during the COVID-19 pandemic. Specifically, we have been hearing that postal carriers are refusing to comply with screening process as required by CMS and many states for entrance into long term care facilities.

The United States Postal Service (USPS) will be offering centers and other customers three options for mail delivery if there are issues with their current delivery.

  1. You may opt to redirect to a temporary mail receptacle inside or outside the building where screening would not be necessary.
  2. Place the mail on hold at the Post Office servicing this delivery. Mail and parcels can be held up to 30 days and will be available for customer pickup.
  3. Redirect all mail for the business to an alternate location.

We will continue to monitor this issue, and keep members apprised of any relevant updates.