Article 3A.

Miscellaneous Provisions.

122C-80. Criminal history record check required for certain applicants for employment.

(a) Definition. - As used in this section, the term "provider" applies to an area authority/county program and any provider of mental health, developmental disability, and substance abuse services that is licensable under Article 2 of this Chapter.

(b) Requirement. - An offer of employment by a provider licensed under this Chapter to an applicant to fill a position that does not require the applicant to have an occupational license is conditioned on consent to a State and national criminal history record check of the applicant. If the applicant has been a resident of this State for less than five years, then the offer of employment is conditioned on consent to a State and national criminal history record check of the applicant. The national criminal history record check shall include a check of the applicant's fingerprints. If the applicant has been a resident of this State for five years or more, then the offer is conditioned on consent to a State criminal history record check of the applicant. A provider shall not employ an applicant who refuses to consent to a criminal history record check required by this section. Except as otherwise provided in this subsection, within five business days of making the conditional offer of employment, a provider shall submit a request to the Department of Public Safety under G.S. 143B-939 to conduct a criminal history record check required by this section or shall submit a request to a private entity to conduct a State criminal history record check required by this section. Notwithstanding G.S. 143B-939, the Department of Public Safety shall return the results of national criminal history record checks for employment positions not covered by Public Law 105-277 to the Department of Health and Human Services, Criminal Records Check Unit. Within five business days of receipt of the national criminal history of the person, the Department of Health and Human Services, Criminal Records Check Unit, shall notify the provider as to whether the information received may affect the employability of the applicant. In no case shall the results of the national criminal history record check be shared with the provider. Providers shall make available upon request verification that a criminal history check has been completed on any staff covered by this section. A county that has adopted an appropriate local ordinance and has access to the Department of Public Safety data bank may conduct on behalf of a provider a State criminal history record check required by this section without the provider having to submit a request to the Department of Justice. In such a case, the county shall commence with the State criminal history record check required by this section within five business days of the conditional offer of employment by the provider. All criminal history information received by the provider is confidential and may not be disclosed, except to the applicant as provided in subsection (c) of this section. For purposes of this subsection, the term "private entity" means a business regularly engaged in conducting criminal history record checks utilizing public records obtained from a State agency.

(c) Action. - If an applicant's criminal history record check reveals one or more convictions of a relevant offense, the provider shall consider all of the following factors in determining whether to hire the applicant:

(1) The level and seriousness of the crime.

(2) The date of the crime.

(3) The age of the person at the time of the conviction.

(4) The circumstances surrounding the commission of the crime, if known.

(5) The nexus between the criminal conduct of the person and the job duties of the position to be filled.

(6) The prison, jail, probation, parole, rehabilitation, and employment records of the person since the date the crime was committed.

(7) The subsequent commission by the person of a relevant offense.

The fact of conviction of a relevant offense alone shall not be a bar to employment; however, the listed factors shall be considered by the provider. If the provider disqualifies an applicant after consideration of the relevant factors, then the provider may disclose information contained in the criminal history record check that is relevant to the disqualification, but may not provide a copy of the criminal history record check to the applicant.

(d) Limited Immunity. - A provider and an officer or employee of a provider that, in good faith, complies with this section shall be immune from civil liability for:

(1) The failure of the provider to employ an individual on the basis of information provided in the criminal history record check of the individual.

(2) Failure to check an employee's history of criminal offenses if the employee's criminal history record check is requested and received in compliance with this section.

(e) Relevant Offense. - As used in this section, "relevant offense" means a county, state, or federal criminal history of conviction or pending indictment of a crime, whether a misdemeanor or felony, that bears upon an individual's fitness to have responsibility for the safety and well-being of persons needing mental health, developmental disabilities, or substance abuse services. These crimes include the criminal offenses set forth in any of the following Articles of Chapter 14 of the General Statutes: Article 5, Counterfeiting and Issuing Monetary Substitutes; Article 5A, Endangering Executive and Legislative Officers; Article 6, Homicide; Article 7B, Rape and Other Sex Offenses; Article 8, Assaults; Article 10, Kidnapping and Abduction; Article 13, Malicious Injury or Damage by Use of Explosive or Incendiary Device or Material; Article 14, Burglary and Other Housebreakings; Article 15, Arson and Other Burnings; Article 16, Larceny; Article 17, Robbery; Article 18, Embezzlement; Article 19, False Pretenses and Cheats; Article 19A, Obtaining Property or Services by False or Fraudulent Use of Credit Device or Other Means; Article 19B, Financial Transaction Card Crime Act; Article 20, Frauds; Article 21, Forgery; Article 26, Offenses Against Public Morality and Decency; Article 26A, Adult Establishments; Article 27, Prostitution; Article 28, Perjury; Article 29, Bribery; Article 31, Misconduct in Public Office; Article 35, Offenses Against the Public Peace; Article 36A, Riots, Civil Disorders, and Emergencies; Article 39, Protection of Minors; Article 40, Protection of the Family; Article 59, Public Intoxication; and Article 60, Computer-Related Crime. These crimes also include possession or sale of drugs in violation of the North Carolina Controlled Substances Act, Article 5 of Chapter 90 of the General Statutes, and alcohol-related offenses such as sale to underage persons in violation of G.S. 18B-302 or driving while impaired in violation of G.S. 20-138.1 through G.S. 20-138.5.

(f) Penalty for Furnishing False Information. - Any applicant for employment who willfully furnishes, supplies, or otherwise gives false information on an employment application that is the basis for a criminal history record check under this section shall be guilty of a Class A1 misdemeanor.

(g) Conditional Employment. - A provider may employ an applicant conditionally prior to obtaining the results of a criminal history record check regarding the applicant if both of the following requirements are met:

(1) The provider shall not employ an applicant prior to obtaining the applicant's consent for criminal history record check as required in subsection (b) of this section or the completed fingerprint cards as required in G.S. 143B-939.

(2) The provider shall submit the request for a criminal history record check not later than five business days after the individual begins conditional employment. (2000-154, s. 4; 2001-155, s. 1; 2004-124, ss. 10.19D(c), (h); 2005-4, ss. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5(a); 2007-444, s. 3; 2012-12, s. 2(tt); 2014-100, ss. 17.1(q), (ddd); 2015-181, s. 47.)

 

122C-81. National accreditation benchmarks.

(a) As used in this section, the term:

(1) "National accreditation" applies to accreditation by an entity approved by the Secretary that accredits mental health, developmental disabilities, and substance abuse services.

(2) "Provider" applies to only those providers of services, including facilities, requiring national accreditation, which services are designated by the Secretary pursuant to subsection (b) of this section.

(b) The Secretary, through the Medicaid State Plan, Medicaid waiver, or rules adopted by the Secretary, shall designate the mental health, developmental disabilities, and substance abuse services that require national accreditation. In accordance with rules of the Commission, the Secretary may exempt a provider that is accredited under this section and in good standing with the national accrediting agency from undergoing any routine monitoring that is duplicative of the oversight by the national accrediting agency.

(c) Providers enrolled with the Medicaid program prior to July 1, 2008, and providing services that require national accreditation approved by the Secretary pursuant to subsection (b) of this section, shall successfully complete national accreditation requirements within three years of enrollment with the Medicaid program. Providers shall meet the following benchmarks to ensure continuity of care for consumers in the event the provider does not make sufficient progress in achieving national accreditation in a timely manner:

(1) Nine months prior to the accreditation deadline - Formal selection of an accrediting agency as documented by a letter from the agency to the provider acknowledging the provider's selection of that accrediting agency. A provider failing to meet this benchmark shall be prohibited from admitting new clients to service. If a provider fails to meet this benchmark, then the LMEs shall work with the provider to transfer all the provider's entire case load to another provider within four months of the date of the provider's failure to meet the benchmark. The transfer of the case load shall be in increments such that not fewer than twenty-five percent (25%) of the provider's total caseload shall be transferred per month. The Department shall terminate the provider's enrollment in the Medicaid program within four months of the provider's failure to meet the benchmark.

(2) Six months prior to the accreditation deadline - An on-site accreditation review scheduled by the accrediting agency as documented by a letter from the agency to the facility. A provider failing to meet this benchmark will be prohibited from admitting new clients to service. If a provider fails to meet this benchmark, then the LMEs shall work with the provider to transfer the provider's entire case load to another provider within three months of the date of the provider's failure to meet the benchmark. The transfer of the case load shall be in increments such that not fewer than thirty-three percent (33%) of the provider's total caseload shall be transferred per month. The Department shall terminate the provider's enrollment in the Medicaid program within three months of the provider's failure to meet the benchmark.

(3) Three months prior to the accreditation deadline - Completion of an on-site accreditation review, receipt of initial feedback from accrediting agency, and submission of a Plan of Correction for any deficiencies noted by the accrediting agency. A provider failing to meet this benchmark shall be prohibited from admitting new clients to service. If a provider fails to meet this benchmark, then the LMEs shall work with the provider to transfer the provider's entire case load to another provider within two months of the date of the provider's failure to meet the benchmark. The transfer of the case load shall be in increments such that not fewer than fifty percent (50%) of the provider's total caseload shall be transferred per month. The Department shall terminate the provider's enrollment in the Medicaid program within two months of the provider's failure to meet the benchmark.

(4) Accreditation deadline - Approval as fully accredited by the national accrediting agency. A provider failing to meet this requirement shall be prohibited from admitting new clients to service. The LMEs will work with a provider failing to meet this deadline to transition clients currently receiving service to other providers within 60 days. The Department shall terminate the provider's enrollment in the Medicaid program within 60 days of the provider's failure to meet the benchmark.

(5) A provider that has its enrollment terminated in the Medicaid program as a result of failure to meet benchmarks for national accreditation or failure to continue to be nationally accredited may not apply for re-enrollment in the Medicaid program for at least one year following its enrollment termination.

(d) Providers enrolled in the Medicaid program or contracting for State-funded services on or after July 1, 2008, and providing services which require national accreditation shall successfully complete all accreditation requirements and be awarded national accreditation within one year of enrollment in the Medicaid program or within two years following the provider's first contract to deliver a State-funded service requiring national accreditation. Providers providing services that require national accreditation shall be required to discontinue service delivery and shall have their Medicaid enrollment and any service contracts terminated if they do not meet the following benchmarks for demonstrating sufficient progress in achieving national accreditation following the date of enrollment in the Medicaid program or initial contract for State-funded services:

(1) Three months - On-site accreditation review scheduled by accrediting agency as documented by a letter from the agency to the provider and completion of self-study and self-evaluation protocols distributed by the selected accrediting agency.

(2) Six months - On-site accreditation review scheduled by accrediting agency as documented by a letter from the agency to the provider.

(3) Nine months - Completion of on-site accreditation review, receipt of initial feedback from accrediting agency, plan to address any deficiencies identified developed.

(4) If a provider's Medicaid enrollment or service delivery contracts are terminated as a result of failure to meet accreditation benchmarks or failure to continue to be nationally accredited, the provider will work with the LME to transition consumers served by the provider to other service providers in an orderly fashion within 60 days of notification by the LME of such failure.

(5) A provider that has its Medicaid enrollment or service delivery contracts terminated as a result of failure to meet accreditation benchmarks or failure to continue to be nationally accredited may not reapply for enrollment in the Medicaid program or enter into any new service delivery contracts for at least one year following enrollment or contract termination.

(e) The Commission may adopt rules establishing a procedure by which a provider that is accredited under this section and in good standing with the national accrediting agency may be exempt from undergoing any routine monitoring that is duplicative of the oversight by the national accrediting agency. Any provider shall continue to be subject to inspection by the Secretary, provided the inspection is not duplicative of inspections required by the national accrediting agency. Rules adopted under this subsection may not waive any requirements that may be imposed under federal law. (2008-107, s. 10.15A(c); 2015-286, s. 3.7.)