Section 240.235  Emergency Home Response Service


a)         Service Definition

Emergency home response service (EHRS) is defined as a 24-hour emergency communication link to assistance outside the participant's home based on the participant's health and safety needs and mobility limitations.  This service is provided by a 2‑way voice communication system consisting of a base unit and an activation device worn by the participant that will automatically link the participant to a professionally staffed support center.  The support center assesses the situation and directs an appropriate response whenever this system is engaged by a participant.  The purpose of providing EHRS is to improve the independence and safety of participants in their own homes in accordance with the authorized person-centered plan of care, and thereby help reduce the need for nursing facility care.


b)         Specific components of EHRS shall include the following:


1)         provide a base unit and, when necessary, adaptive activation devices, together with all connectors, parts and equipment necessary for installation, that can be used in a home by up to 2 participants with hearing, mobility and/or visual impairments.


A)        Wireless adaptive activation devices (e.g., sip and puff, rocking lever switch) must be available when a participant cannot physically activate the call button.


B)        The system must be useable by visually and hearing impaired participants through visual and audible indications of alarm activation.


C)        Adaptive activation devices shall be provided at no extra cost to the participant;


2)         deliver the activation device to the participant and install the base unit, including connection of a seizure line jack, into a functioning telephone system in the participant's home within 15 calendar days after the date of referral.  This service shall not be subcontracted and shall be completed by trained employees identified by picture ID with an ID number that can be verified by the participant;


3)         train the participant and his or her designated emergency responders on the proper use of the base unit and activation device at the time of installation.  The training must include:


A)        demonstration of use and maintenance of EHRS equipment;


B)        explanation of the EHRS provider's services and response protocol;


C)        information on the general care of the base unit and activation device;       


D)        instruction about the monthly testing of the base unit and how to transmit the test results to the support center; and


E)        providing the participant with easy to understand written instructions in the use of EHRS devices, including how to report a malfunction of the equipment.  These instructions shall also be available in Braille or tape recorded to meet the participant's  needs;


4)         assist the participant in selecting and designating up to 3 local emergency responders, which must be updated by the EHRS provider at least every 6 months.  Each responder shall receive both verbal and written instructions from the provider;


5)         obtain participant's/authorized representative's signature to document that the EHRS unit was delivered and installed and that instructions and demonstration were given and understood.  A copy of this receipt must be sent to the CCU;


6)         own and operate a support center to provide live monitoring on a continuous basis, direct an appropriate response whenever the EHRS system is activated, and provide necessary technical support for fault conditions, including a language line that provides interpreter service for at least 140 languages and communication facilitated by a teletypewriter (TTY) communication device for the deaf, as appropriate;


7)         own and operate a back-up support center that provides all components specified in subsection (b)(6) and operates on a separate power grid;


8)         maintain adequate local staffing levels of qualified personnel to service necessary administrative activities, installation, in-home training, signal monitoring, technical support and repair requests in a timely manner.  A provider agency must have a written training program for personnel and be able to demonstrate staff qualifications;


9)         in the event of a malfunction, repair or replace the base unit or activation device within 24 hours after receiving the malfunction report;


10)         alert the participant when electric power to the base unit has been interrupted (e.g., unplugged) and the unit is operating on a standby power source;


11)         notify the CCU within 1 business day after activation of the base unit and work with the appropriate care coordination supervisor to resolve service complaints from the participant or emergency responder;


12)         notify the CCU immediately if EHRS services cannot be initiated or must be terminated; and


13)        maintain records in accordance with Section 240.1542 relating to participant referral and service statistics, including equipment delivery; device activation; participant and responder training; signal monitoring and test transmission activity; equipment malfunction, repair and replacement; power interruption alerts; and notification of the CCUs, plus billing and payment information, and personnel matters.


c)         Units of Service


1)         One unit of installation service is the one-time fee to the provider agency for the activity associated with the installation of the base unit in the participant's home.


2)         One unit of monthly service is the fixed unit rate of reimbursement, per month, for the provider agency activity associated with providing EHRS to each participant.


(Source:  Amended at 42 Ill. Reg. 20653, effective January 1, 2019)