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Protecting the Personal Funds of the Mentally Retarded: New Federal Regulations
Marshall B. Kapp
Psychiatric Services 1981; doi:
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Department of Medicine in Society Wright State University School of Medicine Dayton, Ohio

American Psychiatric Association

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In July 1980 the federal government established new requirements for protecting the personal funds of residents of intermediate care facilities for the mentally retarded. The regulations grew out of dissatisfaction with state laws and with the Department of Health and Human Services' earlier regulations governing facilities receiving Medicare and Medicaid funds, and were a response to the Medicare-Medicaid Anti-Fraud and Abuse Amendments of 1977. The new regulations give patients the choice of managing their own financial affairs, appointing a representative to manage them, or authorizing the facility to hold, safeguard, and account for their funds. Facilities' responsibilities include informing residents of their rights and obligations concerning their funds, keeping records of all transactions involving funds held for residents, allowing residents or representatives reasonable access to funds and records, keeping residents' and institutional monies separate, and using existing agencies such as public guardians' offices to address the cases of incompetent residents who lack representatives. HHS has assigned primary enforcement responsibility to state Medicaid agencies.

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