Office Of Human Rights Information for Behavior Analysts

by | Sep 9, 2019 | Medicaid, News

In the summer of 2019, the Office of Human Rights presented trainings for BCBAs.  This information does not replace a training, so if you have the opportunity to attend, please do so!

Here is a link to the training presentation.

There are five regions for OHR.  Click the link to see where your area resides.

Note that BCBAs and BCaBAs actually do not fall under the current regulations since we are not licensed by DBHDS, but we work with providers who do.  Therefore, following these regulations are more of a best practice than a requirement.

Although BCBA’s are not “responsible” for taking Plans or restrictions to the LHRC, they may go with a licensed provider.  Click here for LHRC meeting dates/times/locations by Region.  (warning, this site is often under construction)

The Department’s Office of Human Rights, established in 1978, has as its basis the Rules and Regulations to assure the rights of individuals receiving services from providers licensed, funded, or operated by DBHDS.  The Regulations outline the Department’s responsibility for assuring the protection of the rights of consumers in facilities and programs operated funded and licensed by DBHDS.

However, in 2017, Licensed Behavior Analysts were added to the list of professionals who can review a plan that includes time out or restraint.  See this link for more information.

Some tips:

When working with providers, make sure to pull back on the behavior analytic language to better communicate.  Especially be sure to translate acronyms

LHRC – Local Human Rights Committees: These committees look at provider plans in their area to be sure that the rights of the individual receiving services are being maintained.  A BCBA may be called upon to review such plans.  Or it may be necessary for a BCBA to have his/her plan reviewed by the committee.  Questions will not be about the clinical aspects of the plan, just the process.

Informed Consent – note that there is a sample in WAMS for providers of DBHDS services (such as Therapeutic Consultation)

Any Restrictions must be put in writing.  The behavior plan must be reviewed if it includes references to restraint or time-out.  Note that an IRC (internal review committee) would do a clinical review and the LHRC would do a process review.

The OHR defines restriction and restraint differently.  Restraint may only be applied if there is imminent harm.  Restraint must not be used for non-compliance, even if it is a non-negotiable task (something the individual is required to do, such as take their medicine).  The best practice for a restraint is to immediately release when there is no longer imminent harm.  OHR has specific forms to be used for restraints and restrictions.

It is important that behavior plans clearly define for providers (such as group home workers or day support workers) what tasks are non-negotiable.  In addition, if the provider will need to touch the individual for any reason, that should be defined as well.

BCBAs should also clearly document training to make sure direct service providers are not taking direction too far.  Make sure to know the physical intervention (Safety Care, MANDT, etc.) that the provider is using so that you can use that terminology in the plan.  Best practice is simply to refer back to the agency policy and not be specific.

Time out must also be clearly defined if not using the specified regulations definition.