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Title: Section 405.28 - Social services

Effective Date


405.28 Social services. The hospital shall provide appropriate supportive services to meet the psychosocial needs of its patients. The services shall be oriented to assist patients and their families with personal and environmental difficulties which predispose to illness or interfere with obtaining maximum benefits from hospital care.

(a) Each patient shall be screened prior to or upon admission to determine the need for social services. All patients and families identified through such screening, and all patients and families subsequently identified as needing social services by medical, nursing or other clinical staff, shall be provided with the support they require.

(b) Social services shall be provided under the direction of a qualified social worker who is licensed and registered by the New York State Education Department to practice as a licensed master social worker (LMSW) or licensed clinical social worker (LCSW), with the scope of practice defined in Article 154 of the Education Law.

(c) Personnel providing social services shall be qualified by training and experience to:

(1) recognize the psychosocial needs of patients and their families;

(2) evaluate crisis situations and disability resulting from emotional, social and economic stresses of illness;

(3) counsel patients and families to deal with the particular stresses affecting them;

(4) participate in hospital care planning and assist patients and families to understand, accept and follow medical and other professional recommendations to restore patients to optimum social and health adjustments; and

(5) arrange for specialized assistance from other sources within the hospital and from community resources for patients and families who need such assistance. Such arrangements shall include but not be limited to educational and tutorial services with the patient's school district in accordance with section 3202 (6) of the Education Law for inpatients between the ages of five and twenty-one who:

(i) are physically and mentally capable of benefitting from such services,

(ii) are expected to be hospitalized for a period of time sufficient to interrupt their normal educational program, and

(iii) if over age sixteen, are still enrolled in school.

(d) All hospitals except rural hospitals and hospitals outside an urban area shall have an organized social work department, which shall be directed by a qualified medical social worker. The department shall be integrated with other departments of the hospital, and shall participate in appropriate education, training and orientation programs for medical, nursing and other clinical staff, and for administrative personnel.

(e) The hospital shall implement, in conjunction with the quality assurance committee, a systematic process for the monitoring and evaluation of the quality and appropriateness of social services provided to patients and families and for the resolution of identified problems.

(f) The hospital shall develop and implement written policies and procedures relating to the long term care ombudsmen program as provided for in section 218 of the Elder Law and section 2803-c of the Public Health Law which provide the following:

(1) The hospital shall permit and not restrict or prohibit access to the hospital by duly designated ombudsmen who are performing their official duties on behalf of hospital inpatients who have been admitted from or who are awaiting readmission to, a residential health care facility licensed under Article 28 of the Public Health Law, or adult care facility licensed under section 461-b of the Social Services Law.

(2) The hospital and the hospital staff shall permit and not interfere with confidential visits and communications between such inpatients and such ombudsmen except in the case of in-person visits which are medically contraindicated. Such medical contraindication shall be documented for that patient by the attending practitioner in the patient's medical record.

(3) The hospital and the hospital staff shall not retaliate or take reprisals against any patient, employee or other person, who has filed a complaint with, or provided information to, such ombudsmen.


VOLUME C (Title 10)