The Colorado State Board of Health has proposed comprehensive revisions to community clinic requirements, including authorizing community clinics to be off-campus locations of general hospitals.
The new proposed rules have been amended as follows:
- change the name of “community clinics” to “primary care clinics” and the name of “community clinics and emergency centers” to “community emergency centers.”
- amend the definitions of “primary” and “emergency” care to update and clarify the existing language.
- exempt Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) and Rural Health Clinics (RHCs) from community clinic regulation, in accordance with recently enacted legislation – specifically HB 11-1101 and HB 11-1323, respectively.
- require facilities that provide emergency care to always be open during a given 24-hour period; current regulation allows for temporary service interruptions during a 24-hour period.
- require primary care clinics to have signage as to when they are open and how consumers can obtain services when the facilities are closed.
- limit seasonal closures to community emergency centers in non-metropolitan areas that experience seasonal population influx (such as centers in ski areas); and requires such facilities to report closures to the Department of Public Health and Environment, use certain signage during the closure and conduct fire drills and review procedures to be following in case of fire or evacuation emergency within specified time frames.
- authorize community clinics to be off-campus locations of a general hospital, which is prohibited under current regulation.
A hearing on the amended rules will be held on Wednesday, September 21, 2011 at the Department of Public Health and Environment, Building A, Sabin-Cleere Conference Room, 4300 Cherry Creek Drive South, Denver, Colorado 80246, beginning at 8:00 am.