|(a) General requirements.
(1) Residents eligible for admission to Alzheimer's
units will have a diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease or related disorders.
The need for admission to the Alzheimer's unit must be documented
by the attending physician.
(2) Security and safety measures are provided to prevent
the residents from harming themselves or leaving designated indoor
or outdoor areas without supervision by staff members or other responsible
escort. Policies will also be provided to prevent abuse of the rights
and property of other residents.
(3) Understanding that security measures to prevent
wandering may infringe on resident rights, care must be exercised
in the use of physical or chemical restraint. The specific purpose
and time-limited orders for any physical or chemical restraint must
be written and renewed according to facility policy. The frequency
of such renewal must not exceed 60 days.
(4) Activity and recreational programs will be provided
and utilized to the maximum extent possible for all residents in order
to promote physical well being and help with behavior management.
The program must be tailored to the individual resident's needs, being
appropriate for his specific impairment and stage of disease.
(5) Residents are provided privacy in treatment and
in care for his or her personal needs.
(6) Access to outdoor areas must be provided and such
areas must have suitable walls or fencing that do not allow climbing
or present a hazard.
(A) The minimum distance of the fence from the building
(i) 8'-0" from the building if there are no window
(ii) 20'-0" from a bedroom window if the fencing is
solid and 15'-0" from a bedroom window if the fencing is open similar
(B) The minimum area of enclosure must be 800 square
feet. Exception: If the enclosed space has an area of refuge which
extends beyond a minimum of 20'-0" from the building and the area
of refuge is equal to or greater than 15 square feet per resident
for the wings enclosed.
(C) An exit gate from the enclosure to a public way
must comply with the following criteria.
(i) A minimum of two gates must be remotely located
from each other if only one wing or exit is enclosed. If the enclosed
space between the building and the fence is less than 10'-0", one
of the remotely located exit gates must be directly in line with the
building exit door.
(ii) If doors into two or more smoke compartments are
enclosed by the fencing and entry access can be made at each door,
a minimum of one gate is required.
(iii) The gates must be located to provide a continuous
path of travel from the building exit to a public way including walkways
of concrete, asphalt, or other approved materials suitable for wheeled
beds, chairs, and stretchers. Gates and walkways must be wide enough
to accommodate beds and wheelchairs.
(D) If gates are locked, the gate nearest the exit
from the building must be locked with an electronic lock which operates
the same as electronic locks on corridor control doors or exit doors
and is in compliance with the NFPA 70 for exterior exposure. Additional
gates may also have electronic locks or may have keyed locks provided
staff carry the keys. A gate between two enclosed wings may have a
keyed lock provided access can be gained into both wings from the
(E) Fencing material must comply with the following:
(i) Wood--no limit on height, should be constructed
with posts and support members on the exterior to deter residents
from climbing over fence.
(ii) Wire--if chain-link type fence, provide protection
on top of the fence to prevent resident injury from pointed wire.
(7) Any security measures taken to provide for the
safety of wandering patients should be as unobtrusive as possible.
(8) Toxic garden plantings must be prohibited.
(1) All assigned staff members and consultants to the
unit must have documented training in the care and handling of Alzheimer's
residents, including at least:
(A) eight hours of orientation to cover the following:
(i) facility Alzheimer's policies;
(ii) etiology and treatment of dementias;
(iii) stages of Alzheimer's disease;
(iv) behavior management; and
(v) communication; and
(B) four hours of the required annual continuing education
must be in Alzheimer's disease or related disorders.
(2) A social worker, licensed or temporarily licensed
by the State of Texas, must be utilized as Community/Family Support
Coordinator whose functions must include:
(A) evaluation of resident's initial social history
(B) utilization of community resources;
(C) conducting quarterly family support group meetings;
(D) identification and utilization of existing Alzheimer's
(3) Specially trained staff will be maintained and
assigned exclusively to the Alzheimer's unit. Although emergency scheduling
may require substitution of staff, every effort should be made to
provide residents with familiar staff members in order to minimize
resident confusion. Staff training will meet at least the minimum
requirements in subsection (a)(2) of this section.
(4) Required overall minimum staffing ratios for direct
care in certified Alzheimer's units in nursing facilities are as follows.
(c) Physical plant. Alzheimer's units must be segregated
from other parts of a facility with appropriate security devices and
measures and must meet the following requirements.
(1) Living rooms, day rooms, lounges, and sun rooms,
must be provided on a sliding scale as follows.
(2) A dining area must provide a minimum of ten square
feet per resident with at least one exterior window.
(3) Bathtubs or showers must be provided at a minimum
rate of one for each 20 beds in nursing facilities.
(4) Water closets and lavatories must be provided at
a minimum rate of:
(A) one for each eight beds in nursing facilities;
(B) one for each 15 clients in adult day health care
(5) In all facilities a lavatory must be provided in
or adjacent to each area having a water closet.
(6) A monitoring station for staff must be provided
with the following:
(A) writing surface such as a desk or built-in counter
(C) task illumination;
(D) communication system such as a telephone or intercom
to the main staff station of the facility; and
(E) storage for resident records such as a lockable
metal cabinet or storage closet.
(7) Two remote exits must be provided in order to meet
NFPA 101 requirements.
(8) Corridor control doors, if used for security of
the residents, must be similar to smoke doors, that is, be 44 inches
in width each leaf, and must swing in opposite directions. A latch
or other fastening device on a door must be provided with a knob,
handle, panic bar, or other simple type of releasing device, the method
of operation of which is obvious, even in darkness.
(9) Locking devices may be used on the control doors
provided the following criteria are met.
(A) The building must have a complete sprinkler system
and a complete fire alarm system including a corridor smoke detection
system or smoke detectors located in each resident bedroom, which
are interconnected into the fire alarm system.
(B) The locking device must be electronic and must
be released when the following occurs:
(i) activation of the fire alarm or sprinkler systems;
(ii) power failure to the facility; and
(iii) pressing a button located at the main staff station
and at the monitoring station.
(C) Key pad or buttons may be located at the control
doors for routine use by staff for service.
(D) Upon loss of primary power, the control doors must
not automatically reset on emergency power, but must be reset by manual
means only. An exception is when the control doors are not in an exit
access, they may automatically reset on emergency power. There must
be at least two remote exits on each side of the control doors which
meet all of the requirements for exits, such as proper width of egress
and proper size of exterior doors, according to the NFPA 101.
(E) Staff must be trained in the methods of releasing
the locking device.
(10) The exit doors may be equipped with a locking
device provided one of the following methods is met:
(A) the locking arrangement meets the requirements
for Delayed Egress Locking Systems in NFPA 101, or
(B) the following criteria which have been approved
(i) The building must have a complete fire alarm system
including a corridor smoke detection system or smoke detectors located
in each resident bedroom and a complete sprinkler system which are
interconnected to the fire alarm system.
(ii) The locking device must be electro-magnetic; that
is, no type of throw-bolt is to be used.
(iii) The device must release when the following occurs:
(I) activation of the fire alarm or sprinkler system;
(II) power failure to the facility; and
(III) activating a switch located at the main staff
station and at the monitoring station.
(iv) Upon loss of primary power, the exit doors must
not automatically reset on emergency power, but must be reset by manual
(v) A manual fire alarm pull must be located within
5'0" of the exit door with a sign stating, "Pull to release door in
(vi) A key pad, card, control button, or other electronic
device may be located at the exit door for routine use by staff.
(vii) Staff must be trained in the methods of releasing
the locking device.
|Source Note: The provisions of this §554.2208 adopted to be effective May 1, 1995, 20 TexReg 2393; amended to be effective July 1, 1996, 21 TexReg 4408; amended to be effective March 22, 2018, 43 TexReg 1646; transferred effective January 15, 2021, as published in the Texas Register December 11, 2020, 45 TexReg 8871