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RULE §554.1002Additional Nursing Services Staffing Requirements

(a) The ratio of licensed nurses to residents must be sufficient to meet the needs of the residents.

  (1) At a minimum, the facility must maintain a ratio (for every 24-hour period) of one licensed nursing staff person for each 20 residents or a minimum of .4 licensed-care hours per resident day. To determine licensed-care hours per resident day, multiply the number of licensed nurses by the number of hours they work in a single day and divide the product by the number of residents in the facility. Three nurses working eight-hour shifts is 24 hours, divided by 60 residents, equals .4 licensed-care hours per resident day.

  (2) Licensed nurses who may be counted in the ratio include, but are not limited to, director of nursing, assistant directors of nursing, staff development coordinators, charge nurses, and medication/treatment nurses. These licensed nurses may be counted subject to the limitations of paragraphs (3) and (4) of this subsection.

  (3) Staff, who also have administrative duties not related to nursing, may be counted in the ratio only to the degree of hours spent in nursing-related duties.

  (4) If a multi-level facility (nursing facility or Medicare SNF) has one director of nursing over the entire facility, he may not be counted in the nursing ratio. A director of nursing for a single distinct part may be counted in the ratio for the distinct part.

(b) A graduate vocational nurse who has a temporary work permit must work under the direction of a licensed vocational nurse, registered nurse, or licensed physician who is physically present in the facility. The graduate nurse who has a temporary work permit must work under the direction of a registered nurse until registration has been achieved.

(c) If the facility uses licensed temporary nursing personnel, the temporary personnel must have the same qualifications that permanent facility employees do. If temporary personnel are used for afternoon or night shifts, a full-time, licensed nurse must be on call and immediately available by telephone. The on-call nurse must be a registered nurse unless the facility has a current waiver from DHS and is not required to provide daily RN coverage.

(d) Consultative pediatric nursing services must be available to facility staff if the facility has a pediatric resident.

Source Note: The provisions of this §554.1002 adopted to be effective May 1, 1995, 20 TexReg 2393; amended to be effective October 30, 2011, 36 TexReg 7174; transferred effective January 15, 2021, as published in the Texas Register December 11, 2020, 45 TexReg 8871

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