Community Residence Certification
The Community Residence Certification Unit safeguards individuals with a developmental disability, an acquired brain disorder, or a behavioral health diagnosis, who reside in certain certified community residences.
The purpose of the Community Residence Certification Unit is to safeguard individuals with a developmental disability, an acquired brain disorder, or a behavioral health diagnosis, who reside in certified community residences for 1-3 individuals or certified/licensed community residences for 4 or more individuals, or who receive certified community participation services through a community based certified day services site. This unit also oversees individuals who are living in adult family care homes.
This unit inspects and certifies community residences and Community Participation Services sites in accordance with RSA 126-A, He-M 1001, He-M 1002, and He-M 507. It also inspects and licenses homes for four or more individuals in accordance with RSA 151, He-P 814, He-M 1001, and He-M 1002. In addition, it inspects and licenses Adult Family Care homes in accordance with RSA 151 and He-P 813.
Laws, Rules, and Regulations
What facilities does the Community Residence Unit certify?
The Community Residence Certification unit certifies:
- 1-3 person homes (with or without community participation services (CPS));
- 4+ person homes (with or without CPS); and
- Stand-alone CPS programs.
How often are reviews conducted?
Certification reviews happen in three different instances:
- Temporary/Initial Review
- Annual/Renewal Review
- Emergency Review
After your initial certification review, which happens around the 90-day mark, you will receive another review at the end of your first year. Once you have completed your first two reviews, future reviews will happen as follows:
- 1-3 Person Homes: If the home had 4 or more deficiencies at their annual inspection, the home will have another full inspection at their next review. If the home had 1-3 deficiencies at their annual inspection, the home will have an abbreviated review the following year. If the home had zero deficiencies at their annual inspection, they will have a “skip” review the following year
- CPS Programs with 50 or fewer slots (with 2 or fewer deficiencies): eligible for a two-year certificate.
- 4+ Person Homes (licensed): Yearly, regardless of performance.
- CPS Programs with 50 for more slots: Yearly, regardless of performance.
You will always have two certification reviews during your first year of operation.
What are the requirements for an emergency certification?
Emergency certifications can only be issued if there is a true emergency. Emergency certificates can be backdated up to seven (7) days, and no Life Safety Report (LSR) is required. Once a life safety report is completed, you are no longer eligible for an emergency certification, regardless of whether or not the home passes. The emergency certification is valid for forty-five (45) days with an option for a one-time extension of another forty-five (45) days. An emergency certification can also be issued in an already certified home with 1 or 2 certified beds. To obtain an emergency certification, the agency must submit the emergency certification application, which must be signed by the area agency executive director or designee, plus a copy of the current floor plan.
What are the requirements of a temporary certification?
To get a temporary certification, you must submit a complete certification application. You must also submit a Life Safety Report that has been approved by the local fire department within the past ninety (90) days. You must also provide directions to the home or CPS site, and any waiver application(s)/approval(s), if applicable. The temporary certificate is valid for ninety (90) days, and there will be a record review and onsite review around the 90-day mark.
Can I prepare for my review?
Yes, typically you will have at least one month to prepare for all certification reviews. Your preparations should include:
- Reviewing all records to ensure that the information DHHS needs to review is present. You can use the Residential Certification Tool or the CPS Certification Tool to assist you with this process.
- Completing the Residential Information Packet or CPS Information packet.
What happens if deficiencies or concerns are found during the review?
If deficiencies are found during your review, you will need to prepare a Corrective Action Plan to submit to the Department within 21 days of receiving the deficiency report. This plan must include how the program has corrected or intends to correct the issue(s), the date by which it will be corrected, and how the program intends to prevent this issue from being repeated in the future. Please submit the entire Corrective Action Plan when it has been completed; do not send it in piecemeal.
How do I renew my certification?
You must submit a renewal application (found in the Document Library) at least sixty (60) days prior to your expiration date (120 days for your licensure application, if applicable.) Follow all instructions on the application.
Are there any waivers I can apply for?
There are three categories of waivers:
- BDS Waivers to all He-M administrative rules except for He-M 1201
- Medication Committee waivers in regard to He-M 1201
- HFA Waivers in regard to He-P 814 (specific to licensed homes only)
You must submit the appropriate waiver request forms (found in the Document Library) to DHHS.