§ 42-66.7-7. Access to records, facility, resident.
(a) In the course of an investigation, the long-term care ombudsperson shall:
(1) Make the necessary inquiries and obtain information as is deemed necessary;
(2) Have access to facilities and residents; and
(3) Enter facilities and, after notifying the person in charge, inspect any books, files, medical records, or other records that pertain to the resident.
(b) In the ordinary course of the long-term care ombudsperson's duties, the long-term care ombudsperson shall have access to residents of a facility to:
(1) Visit, talk with, make personal, social, and other appropriate services available;
(2) Inform them of their rights and entitlements and corresponding obligations under federal and state law by distribution of educational materials, discussion in groups, or discussion with individual residents and their families; and
(3) Engage in other methods of assisting, advising, and representing residents to extend to them the full enjoyment of their rights.
(c) The office of the long-term care ombudsperson is considered a health oversight agency.
(d) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, a health oversight agency, and its employees and agents, shall comply with all state and federal confidentiality laws, including, but not limited to, chapter 37.3 of title 5 (Confidentiality of Health Care Communications and Information Act) and specifically subsection 5-37.3-4(c), which requires limitation on the distribution of information which is the subject of this chapter on a "need to know" basis, and § 40.1-5-26.
(P.L. 1995, ch. 92, § 1; P.L. 2003, ch. 55, § 1; P.L. 2003, ch. 74, § 1; P.L. 2006, ch. 361, § 1; P.L. 2006, ch. 501, § 1.)