(a) On and after the effective date of this section, no citation shall be issued or sustained under this chapter for a violation of any regulation discovered and recorded by a facility if all of the following conditions have been met:
(1) The facility maintains an ongoing quality assurance and patient care audit program, which includes maintenance of a quality assurance log which is made available to the state department at the commencement of each inspection and investigation. The facility shall retain this log for the current year and the preceding three years.
(2) The violation was not willful and resulted in no actual harm to any patient or guest.
(3) The violation was first discovered by the licensee and was promptly and accurately recorded in the quality assurance log prior to discovery by the state department.
(4) Promptly upon discovery, the facility implemented remedial action satisfactory to the state department to correct the violation and prevent a recurrence. If the state department determines that remedial action voluntarily undertaken by the facility is unsatisfactory, the state department shall allow the facility reasonable time to augment the remedial action before the condition shall be deemed to be a violation.
(b) Except as otherwise provided in this section, a quality assurance log which meets the criteria of this section shall not be discoverable or admissible in any action against the licensee. The quality assurance log shall be discoverable pursuant to a motion to produce under Chapter 14 (commencing with Section 2031.010) of Title 4 of Part 4 of the Code of Civil Procedure and admissible only for purposes of impeachment. However, the court, in a motion pursuant to Section 2025.420 of the Code of Civil Procedure, or at trial or other proceeding, may limit access to those entries which would be admissible for impeachment purposes.
(c) The quality assurance log shall be made available upon request to any of the following:
(1) Full-time state employees of the Office of the State Long-Term Care Ombudsman.
(2) Ombudsman coordinators, as defined in Section 9701 of the Welfare and Institutions Code.
(3) Ombudsmen qualified by medical training as defined in Section 9701 of the Welfare and Institutions Code, with the approval of either the State Long-Term Care Ombudsman or ombudsman coordinator.
The licensee may make the quality assurance log available, in the licensee’s discretion, to any representative of the Office of the State Long-Term Care Ombudsman, as defined in Section 9701 of the Welfare and Institutions Code, without liability for the disclosure. Each representative of the Office of the State Long-Term Care Ombudsman who has been provided access to a facility’s quality assurance log pursuant to this section shall maintain all disclosures in confidence.
(Amended by Stats. 2005, Ch. 294, Sec. 22. Effective January 1, 2006.)
Last modified: October 25, 2018