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RULE §417.503Definitions

The following words and terms, when used in this subchapter, have the following meanings, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:

  (1) Adult Protective Services (APS) investigator--An employee of the Texas Department of Protective and Regulatory Services (TDPRS) with expertise and demonstrated competence in conducting investigations.

  (2) Advanced practice nurse (APN)--A registered nurse approved by the Board of Nurse Examiners for the State of Texas to practice as an advanced practice nurse on the basis of completion of an advanced educational program. The term includes a nurse practitioner, nurse midwife, nurse anesthetist, and clinical nurse specialist. The term is synonymous with advanced nurse practitioner.

  (3) Agent--Any individual not employed by the facility but working under the auspices of the facility, (e.g., a volunteer, a student).

  (4) Allegation--A report by an individual suspecting or having knowledge that a person served has been or is in a state of abuse, neglect, or exploitation as defined in this subchapter.

  (5) Child--A person served under 18 years of age who is not and has not been married or who has not had the disabilities of minority removed pursuant to the Texas Family Code, Chapter 31.

  (6) Clinical practice--Relates to the demonstration of professional competence in nursing, dental, pharmacy, or medical practice as described, respectively, in the Nursing Practice Act, Vocational Nurse Act, Dental Practice Act, Pharmacy Practice Act, or Medical Practice Act.

  (7) Confirmed--Term used to describe an allegation which is determined to be supported by the preponderance of evidence.

  (8) Contractor--Any organization, entity, or individual who contracts with a facility to provide mental health and mental retardation services. The term includes a local independent school district with which a facility has a memorandum of understanding (MOU) for educational services.

  (9) Designee--A staff member immediately available who is temporarily or permanently appointed to assume designated responsibilities of the head of the facility.

  (10) Facility--A state hospital, state school, state center, or other entity providing mental retardation or mental health services that is operated by the Texas Department of Mental Health and Mental Retardation.

  (11) Guardian--An individual appointed and qualified as a guardian of the person under the Probate Code, Chapter 13.

  (12) Head of the facility--The superintendent or executive director of a facility, or designee. (If the superintendent or executive director is the alleged perpetrator, then the designee assumes all responsibilities of the head of the facility described in this subchapter.)

  (13) Incitement--To spur to action or instigate into activity; implies responsibility for initiating another's actions.

  (14) Inconclusive--Term used to describe an allegation leading to no conclusion or definite result due to lack of witnesses or other relevant evidence.

  (15) Medical intervention--Treatment by a licensed medical doctor, osteopath, podiatrist, dentist, physician's assistant, or advanced practice nurse (APN). For the purposes of this subchapter, the term does not include first aid, an examination, diagnostics (e.g., x-ray, blood test), or the prescribing of oral or topical medication.

  (16) Non-serious physical injury--Any injury requiring minor first aid and determined not to be serious by a registered nurse, advanced practice nurse (APN), or physician.

  (17) Office of Consumer Services and Rights Protection - Ombudsman--The office located at the Texas Department of Mental Health and Mental Retardation's Central Office.

  (18) Peer review--A review of clinical and/or medical practice(s) by peer physicians; a review of clinical and/or dental practice(s) by peer dentists; a review of clinical and/or pharmacy practice(s) by peer pharmacists; or a review of clinical and/or nursing practice(s) by peer nurses.

  (19) Perpetrator--A person who has committed an act of abuse, neglect, or exploitation.

  (20) Perpetrator unknown--Term used to describe instances in which abuse, neglect, or exploitation is evident but positive identification of the responsible person(s) cannot be made, and in which self-injury has been eliminated as the cause.

  (21) Person served--Any person registered or assigned in the Client Assignment and Registration (CARE) system who is receiving services from a facility or contractor.

  (22) Preponderance of evidence--The greater weight of evidence, or evidence which is more credible and convincing to the mind.

  (23) PMAB or Prevention and Management of Aggressive Behavior--TDMHMR's proprietary risk management program that uses the least intrusive, most effective options to reduce the risk of injury for persons served and for staff from acts or potential acts of aggression.

  (24) Primary contact--In cases in which the alleged victim is an adult with mental retardation who is unable to authorize the disclosure of protected health information and who does not have a guardian, the individual designated as the alleged victim's correspondent who receives all other information about the alleged victim (e.g., spouse, parent).

  (25) Reporter--The individual who reports an allegation of abuse, neglect, or exploitation.

  (26) Retaliatory action--Any action intended to inflict emotional or physical harm or inconvenience on a person that is taken because the person has reported abuse, neglect, or exploitation. This includes, but is not limited to, harassment, disciplinary measures, discrimination, reprimand, threat, and criticism.

  (27) Review authority--An individual or panel of individuals who, at the discretion and request of the head of the facility, reviews selected cases of abuse, neglect, or exploitation, including those that are confirmed, unconfirmed, unfounded, or inconclusive. The review authority may include a member of the facility's public responsibility committee.

  (28) Serious physical injury--Any injury requiring medical intervention or hospitalization or any injury determined to be serious by a physician or advanced practice nurse (APN).

  (29) TDMHMR--The Texas Department of Mental Health and Mental Retardation.

  (30) TDPRS--The Texas Department of Protective and Regulatory Services.

  (31) Unconfirmed--Term used to describe an allegation in which a preponderance of evidence exists to prove that abuse, neglect, or exploitation did not occur.

  (32) Unfounded--Term used to describe an allegation that is spurious or patently without factual basis.

Source Note: The provisions of this §417.503 adopted to be effective April 23, 2003, 28 TexReg 3354

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