ODP Announcement 21-039 outlines changes to the implementation plan for the Incident Management Bulletin. In response to the current national healthcare workforce crisis affecting a majority of provider agencies within the ODP network, ODP will not be requiring incidents of “abuse to an individual by another individual” and “injury requiring treatment beyond first aid as a result of an accidental injury” to be investigated by a Department-certified Investigator, in accordance with §6100.402.
However, the reporting agency may want to implement these changes now, as it is best to practice to get familiar with the new requirements contained in the bulletin. Additionally, ODP or its delegated management review entities may require an investigation to be completed by a Department-certified Investigator. Guidance and review criteria will be provided to management reviewers.
ODP will continue to evaluate the impacts of this delay. ODP will also provide notification to incident-reporting entities six months prior to when system changes will become effective that require these incidents to be investigated by a Department-certified Investigator.
Please note: Individual-to-Individual Abuse that involves sexual abuse will be required to be reported in EIM as “Sexual Abuse” starting on July 1, 2021. When the target of the investigation is another individual receiving services, this will be identified using the target identifier screens in EIM. There is no delay for reporting and investigating incidents of sexual abuse. These incidents currently require an investigation to be completed by Department-certified Investigation, and this requirement will continue after July 1, 2021.
Additionally, the secondary categories of verbal abuse and psychological abuse have been combined; therefore “verbal” is no longer a secondary category listed in the EIM system.
In 55 Pa. Code §Chapter 6000, “Injury Requiring Treatment Beyond First Aid” is a primary category that is currently used to report in the EIM system. Starting July 1, 2021 this primary category is changing to “Serious Injury” with a secondary category of “Injury Accidental,” which is to be indicated when the injury is the result of an accident. The requirement to have a Department-certified Investigator conduct the investigation for accidental injuries when treatment beyond first aid was necessary will also continue to be delayed.
Specific to incidents of “Serious Injury—Injury Accidental” where treatment beyond first aid was provided in an urgent care setting, emergency room, or other healthcare setting, ODP will be expecting healthcare treatment summary documentation to be scanned and uploaded into the EIM as part of the Incident First Section submission. This will allow incident management reviewers to understand the nature and extent of injuries and to confirm that appropriate response and health and safety protections for the individual have been put in place. This information will be used to determine that the incident is classified correctly, that an investigation is not mandatory, and that additional actions are not necessary.
For questions regarding this communication, please contact your ODP Regional Office or the Incident Management Policy division via email.