H.B. No. 3100

RIGHTS OF THE ELDERLY

Bill Description

Governor Bush signed HB 3100 on May 30, 1997. HB 3100 becomes effective September 1, 1997.

HB 3100 rewrites Chapter 102 of the Human Resources Code, entitled "Rights of the Elderly." Section 102.003 is a senior citizen's bill of rights. The bill principally applies to persons and entities "providing convalescent and nursing home services, home health services, or alternate care services" to persons 60 years of age or older. These service providers must provide a list of these rights to each elderly person they serve, must not deny such persons these rights, and run the risk of losing their license if they violate the terms of the bill.

Here's what the House Committee on Human Services committee report says about the background and purpose of HB 3100:

BACKGROUND

In 1983, Chapter 102 was added to the Human Resource Code delineating the "Rights of the Elderly." The "rights" basically incorporated into state law the regulations adopted by the State Medicaid Office with the goal to provide better protection for elderly persons in residential settings. Shortly after the adoption of the "Rights of the Elderly", the state also added another statute to protect the rights of the people with disabilities. Since 1983, these laws have remained on the books virtually unchanged, except for a minor change in the name of the Department of Human Resources to Department of Human Services in 1985.

The House Committee on Human Services' Interim Study on Long-Term Care heard testimony from representatives of the Department on Aging's Elder Rights Task Force on the status of Chapter 102. The Task Force recommended changes that would recognize to a greater extent the right of elderly Texans to retain a greater amount of self-determination. The Interim Committee agreed that provisions of Chapter 102 needed to be updated to reflect the wide array of long-term care service locations and the shift to consumer control and choice with regard to services received.

PURPOSE

This bill would update the provisions contained in Chapter 102 of the Human Resource Code to enhance the rights of elderly Texans and to address their current needs in order that they may retain a greater amount of self-determination.

This statute doesn't appear to create a private right of enforcement, but I don't know enough about this area of the law to say that with certainty. Even though it doesn't appear to apply directly to estate planners, etc., it would be a good idea to get a copy of the list of rights in Section 102.003 -- especially if you do guardianship or elder law work.


Copyright 1997 by Glenn M. Karisch, Ikard & Golden, P. C., Austin, Texas. This page was last revised on June 14, 1997.