Vol. 36 Iss. 23 - July 06, 2020

Chapter 371
Final Regulation

REGISTRAR'S NOTICE: The State Board of Health is claiming an exemption from Article 2 of the Administrative Process Act in accordance with § 2.2-4006 A 4 a of the Code of Virginia, which excludes regulations that are necessary to conform to changes in Virginia statutory law or the appropriation act where no agency discretion is involved. The State Board of Health will receive, consider, and respond to petitions by any interested person at any time with respect to reconsideration or revision.

Title of Regulation: 12VAC5-371. Regulations for the Licensure of Nursing Facilities (amending 12VAC5-371-10, 12VAC5-371-300).

Statutory Authority: §§ 32.1-12 and 32.1-127 of the Code of Virginia.

Effective Date: August 6, 2020.

Agency Contact: Rebekah E. Allen, Senior Policy Analyst, Virginia Department of Health, 9960 Mayland Drive, Suite 401, Richmond, VA 23233, telephone (804) 367-2102, FAX (804) 527-4502, or email


Pursuant to Chapter 846 of the 2020 Acts of Assembly, the amendments allow nursing facility employees who are authorized to possess, distribute, or administer medications to patients to store, dispense, or administer cannabidiol oil or THC-A oil to a patient who has been issued a valid written certification for the use of cannabidiol oil or THC-A oil and has registered with the Board of Pharmacy.

Part I
Definitions and General Information

12VAC5-371-10. Definitions.

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

"Abuse" means the willful infliction of injury, unreasonable confinement, intimidation, or punishment with resulting physical harm, pain or mental anguish, or deprivation by an individual, including caretaker, of goods or services that are necessary to attain or maintain physical, mental, and psychosocial well-being. This includes verbal, sexual, physical or mental abuse.

"Administrator" means the individual licensed by the Virginia Board of Long-Term Care Administrators and who has the necessary authority and responsibility for management of the nursing facility.

"Admission" means the process of acceptance into a nursing facility, including orientation, rules and requirements, and assignment to appropriate staff. Admission does not include readmission to the facility after a temporary absence.

"Advance directive" means (i) a witnessed written document, voluntarily executed by the declarant in accordance with the requirements of § 54.1-2983 of the Code of Virginia, or (ii) a witnessed oral statement, made by the declarant subsequent to the time he is diagnosed as suffering from a terminal condition and in accordance with the provision of § 54.1-2983 of the Code of Virginia.

"Assessment" means the process of evaluating a resident for the purpose of developing a profile on which to base services. Assessment includes information gathering, both initially and on an ongoing basis, designed to assist the multi-disciplinary staff in determining the resident's need for care, and the collection and review of resident-specific data.

"Attending physician" means a physician currently licensed by the Virginia Board of Medicine and identified by the resident, or legal representative, as having the primary responsibility in determining the delivery of the resident's medical care.

"Board" means the Board of Health.

"Cannabidiol oil" means the same as the term is defined in subsection A of § 54.1-3408.3 of the Code of Virginia.

"Certified nurse aide" means the title that can only be used by individuals who have met the requirements to be certified, as defined by the Virginia Board of Nursing, and who are listed in the nurse aide registry.

"Chemical restraint" means a psychopharmacologic drug (a drug prescribed to control mood, mental status, or behavior) that is used for discipline or convenience and not required to treat medical symptoms or symptoms from mental illness or mental retardation that prohibit an individual from reaching his highest level of functioning.

"Clinical record" means the documentation of health care services, whether physical or mental, rendered by direct or indirect resident-provider interactions. An account compiled by physicians and other health care professionals of a variety of resident health information, such as assessments and care details, including testing results, medicines, and progress notes.

"Commissioner" means the State Health Commissioner.

"Complaint" means any allegation received by the Department of Health other than an incident reported by the facility staff. Such allegations include abuse, neglect, exploitation, or violation of state or federal laws or regulations.

"Comprehensive plan of care" means a written action plan, based on assessment data, that identifies a resident's clinical and psychosocial needs, the interventions to meet those needs, treatment goals that are measurable and that documents the resident's progress toward meeting the stated goals.

"Construction" means the building of a new nursing facility or the expansion, remodeling, or alteration of an existing nursing facility and includes the initial and subsequent equipping of the facility.

"Department" means the Virginia Department of Health.

"Dignity" means staff, in their interactions with residents, carry out activities which assist a resident in maintaining and enhancing the resident's self-esteem and self-worth.

"Discharge" means the process by which the resident's services, delivered by the nursing facility, are terminated.

"Discharge summary" means the final written summary of the services delivered, goals achieved and post-discharge plan or final disposition at the time of discharge from the nursing facility. The discharge summary becomes a part of the clinical record.

"Drug" means (i) articles or substances recognized in the official United States "Drug" Pharmacopoeia National Formulary or official Homeopathic Pharmacopoeia of the United States, or any supplement to any of them; (ii) articles or substances intended for the use in the diagnosis, cure, mitigation, treatment, or prevention of disease in man or other animal; (iii) articles or substances, other than food, intended to affect the structure or any function of the body of man or other animal; and (iv) articles or substances intended for use as a component of any article specified in clause (i), (ii), or (iii). This does not include devices or their components, parts or accessories.

"Electronic monitoring" means an unmanned video recording system with or without audio capability installed in the room of a resident.

"Emergency preparedness plan" means a component of a nursing facility's safety management program designed to manage the consequences of natural disasters or other emergencies that disrupt the nursing facility's ability to provide care.

"Employee" means a person who performs a specific job function for financial remuneration on a full-time or part-time basis.

"Facility-managed" means an electronic monitoring system that is installed, controlled, and maintained by the nursing facility with the knowledge of the resident or resident's responsible party in accordance with the facility's policies.

"Full-time" means a minimum of 35 hours or more worked per week in the nursing facility.

"Guardian" means a person legally invested with the authority and charged with the duty of taking care of the resident, managing his property, and protecting the rights of the resident who has been declared by the circuit court to be incapacitated and incapable of administering his own affairs. The powers and duties of the guardian are defined by the court and are limited to matters within the areas where the resident in need of a guardian has been determined to be incapacitated.

"Medication" means any substance, whether prescription or over-the-counter drug, that is taken orally or injected, inserted, topically applied, or otherwise administered.

"Neglect" means a failure to provide timely and consistent services, treatment, or care to a resident necessary to obtain or maintain the resident's health, safety, or comfort or a failure to provide timely and consistent goods and services necessary to avoid physical harm, mental anguish, or mental illness.

"Nursing facility" means any nursing home as defined in § 32.1-123 of the Code of Virginia.

"OLC" means the Office of Licensure and Certification of the Virginia Department of Health.

"Person" means any individual, corporation, partnership, association, trust, or other legal entity, whether governmental or private, owning, managing, or operating a nursing facility.

"Physical restraint" means any manual method or physical or mechanical device, material, or equipment attached or adjacent to the resident's body that the individual cannot remove easily which restricts freedom of movement or normal access to one's own body.

"Policy" means a written statement that describes the principles and guides and governs the activities, procedures and operations of the nursing facility.

"Procedures" means a series of activities designed to implement program goals or policy, which may or may not be written, depending upon the specific requirements within this chapter. For inspection purposes, there must be evidence that procedures are actually implemented.

"Progress note" means a written statement, signed and dated by the person delivering the care, consisting of a pertinent, chronological report of the resident's care. A progress note is a component of the clinical record.

"Qualified" means meeting current legal requirements of licensure, registration or certification in Virginia; having appropriate training and experience commensurate with assigned responsibilities; or, if referring to a professional, possessing an appropriate degree or having documented equivalent education, training or experience.

"Quality assurance" means systematic activities performed to determine the extent to which clinical practice meets specified standards and values with regard to such things as appropriateness of service assignment and duration, appropriateness of facilities and resources utilized, adequacy and clinical soundness of care given. Such activities should also assure changes in practice that do not meet accepted standards. Examples of quality assurance activities include the establishment of facility-wide goals for resident care, the assessment of the procedures used to achieve the goals, and the proposal of solutions to problems in attaining those goals.

"Readmission" means a planned return to the nursing facility following a temporary absence for hospitalization, off-site visit or therapeutic leave, or a return stay or confinement following a formal discharge terminating a previous admission.

"Resident" means the primary service recipient, admitted to the nursing facility, whether that person is referred to as a client, consumer, patient, or other term.

"Resident-managed" means an electronic monitoring system that is installed, controlled, and maintained by the resident with the knowledge of the nursing facility.

"Responsible person or party" means an individual authorized by the resident to act for him as an official delegate or agent. The responsible person may be a guardian, payee, family member or any other individual who has arranged for the care of the resident and assumed this responsibility. The responsible person or party may or may not be related to the resident. A responsible person or party is not a guardian unless so appointed by the court.

"Supervision" means the ongoing process of monitoring the skills, competencies and performance of the individual supervised and providing regular, face-to-face guidance and instruction.

"THC-A oil" means the same as the term is defined in subsection A of § 54.1-3408.3 of the Code of Virginia.

"Volunteer" means a person who, without financial remuneration, provides services to the nursing facility.

12VAC5-371-300. Pharmaceutical services.

A. Provision shall be made for the procurement, storage, dispensing, and accounting of drugs and other pharmacy products in compliance with 18VAC110-20. This may be by arrangement with an off-site pharmacy, but must include provisions for 24-hour emergency service.

B. Each nursing facility shall develop and implement policies and procedures for the handling of drugs and biologicals, including procurement, storage, administration, self-administration and disposal of drugs.

C. Each nursing facility shall have a written agreement with a qualified pharmacist to provide consultation on all aspects of the provision of pharmacy services in the facility.

D. The consultant pharmacist shall make regularly scheduled visits, at least monthly, to the nursing facility for a sufficient number of hours to carry out the function of the agreement.

E. No Excluding cannabidiol oil and THC-A oil,no drug or medication shall be administered to any resident without a valid verbal order or a written, dated and signed order from a physician, dentist or, podiatrist, nurse practitioner, or physician assistant, licensed in Virginia.

F. Nursing facility employees who are authorized to possess, distribute, or administer medications to residents may store, dispense, or administer cannabidiol oil or THC-A oil to a resident who has:

1. Been issued a valid written certification for the use of cannabidiol oil or THC-A oil in accordance with subsection B of § 54.1-3408.3 of the Code of Virginia; and

2. Registered with the Board of Pharmacy.

F. G. Verbal orders for drugs or medications shall only be given to a licensed nurse, pharmacist or physician.

G. H. Drugs and medications not limited as to time or number of doses when ordered shall be automatically stopped, according to the written policies of the nursing facility, and the attending physician shall be notified.

H. I. Each resident's medication regimen shall be reviewed by a pharmacist licensed by the Virginia Board of Pharmacy. Any irregularities identified by the pharmacist shall be reported to the physician and the director of nursing, and their response documented.

I. J. Medication orders shall be reviewed at least every 60 days by the attending physician, nurse practitioner, or physician's assistant.

J. K. Prescription and nonprescription drugs and medications may be brought into the nursing facility by a resident's family, friend or other person provided:

1. The individual delivering the drugs and medications assures timely delivery, in accordance with the nursing facility's written policies, so that the resident's prescribed treatment plan is not disrupted;

2. Each drug or medication is in an individual container; and

3. Delivery is not allowed directly to an individual resident.

In addition, prescription medications shall be obtained and labeled as required by law.

VA.R. Doc. No. R20-6336; Filed June 15, 2020, 10:39 a.m.